FECIF outlines 2017 financial roadmap

The European Federation of Financial Intermediaries and Financial Advisers (FECIF) has met with European Commission members to discuss matters of the day and has outlined what it hopes will be its “financial roadmap” for 2017 and beyond.

Delegates from both FECIF and DG FISMA, including Steve Ryan, deputy head of unit insurance and pensions, met to discuss and analyse and series of proposals including the proposed Pan- European Pension Plan (PEPP) and the Insurance Distribution Directive (IDD).

FECIF, which represents around 250,000 advisers and intermediaries across Europe, had its honorary chairman Vincent Derider and Simon Colboc, who is heading up the Federation’s Working Group on the PEPP in attendance at the meeting, held in Paris.

At the meeting Colboc initially explained FECIF’s main concerns on the PEPP, not least with regards to excessive documentation that, he is worried, could “confuse and mislead consumers”.

FECIF said that following on from Ryan’s comments at the meeting, it feels that with regards to the PEPP, and with the IDD and PRIIPs, it is confident that the European Commission wants to “encourage transparency” and avoid giving consumers information that they can’t digest.

In a statement released today, FECIF said that “the commission would appear to want to achieve three key objectives for the PEPP: portability; ease of sale cross-border; a domestic product that can be used in Member States where it is normally not available.

“It became clear that the commission is planning to present an initiative on the PEPP in mid-2017, whilst a study on the comparison of pension systems of the Member States, edited by a private contractor, will be published early next year,” the statement read.

Insurance Distribution Directive

On the IDD, one of the main concerns for all present was the potential distortion of competition, not least due to different interpretation at national level.

Derudder also highlighted that the large number of documents meant for consumers potentially creates both a point of advice issue and, most importantly, the significant likelihood of misunderstanding for those consumers.

These concerns were shared and Ryan said that he was keen to be informed of cases of interpretation not compatible with the legislation, underlining that EIOPA is working on guidelines regarding the exchange of information and documents between home and host regulators.

It was agreed that information on cases of diverging national practice and interpretation would be shared and that a further meeting would be scheduled between FECIF and Sven Gentner, the Head of Unit C4 Asset Management, which is in charge of the PRIIPs delegated acts.

“FECIF has remained active on behalf of its members since formation in 1999”, said Johannes Muschik, who is currently chairman of the association. “We continue to work hard to advocate for sensible and workable regulation that is in the interests of all stakeholders, not least consumers”.

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Gary Robinson
Deputy Editor, International Investment and Head of Video at Open Door Media Publishing. A fully qualified journalist and filmmaker with more than 20 years' financial services experience, both as journalist and originally as an IFA.

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