European Commission to form European securities markets expert group

Source: European Commission

The European Commission is to create a European Securities Markets Expert Group (ESME), which will look carefully at how the EU securities Directives are applied in practice, determine whether or not they are delivering the intended results, and propose changes where necessary.

This is a follow-up action to the White Paper on Financial Services Policy 2005-2010 (IP/05/1529) and is part of the Better Regulation agenda. The group will be composed of practitioners and market participants who are directly affected by the EU legislative framework as well as by issues of contemporary relevance to the EU securities markets such as credit rating agencies, and are therefore best placed to identify any problems. Interested candidates are invited to send an application to the Commission before 30 April 2006.

Internal Market and Services Commissioner Charlie McCreevy said: "Europe needs a world-class regulatory framework for securities – business driven, efficient, and with strong investor protection. The basic framework is nearly in place. This new expert group will help us to find out how it works on the ground and will provide us with input on contemporary market developments that may require special attention. It is vital that the group is made up of top-class people with the right depth and breadth of experience. I urge all suitably qualified candidates to apply to take part in this important work."

Functions of the expert group

ESME will have three functions. Firstly, it will assist the Commission in its analysis of the legal coherence of the EU securities framework. It will aim to identify points of legal uncertainty which impair the functioning of securities markets from the perspective of the regulated community and users of these markets, and will make recommendations to the Commission accordingly. Secondly, it will provide the Commission with input for the reports on the application of various provisions of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive ("MiFID"), the Prospectus Directive, the Market Abuse Directive and the Transparency Directive. In addition, it will analyse the economic impact of those Directives. Finally, it will provide technical advice – in response to specific requests from the Commission - on issues of contemporary relevance in EU securities markets, such as credit rating agencies and financial analysts.

Membership criteria

The expert group members should be high-level practitioners with legal or commercial experience in the areas covered by the mandate of the group. Interested candidates are invited to send an application to the Commission before 30 April 2006. The Commission will then appoint the members of the group according to the candidates' qualifications and skills. The Commission will decide on the final composition of the expert group in May 2006. Once the members have been selected, a full list of their names will be published.

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