Winter Edition / Feb 2020

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We are pleased to keep going with the Third Edition of EBI Insights!


The Financial Resolution Task Force has kept developing its activities with a fast pace under the impetus of Prof. Ringe and Prof. Gortsos. An event, kindly hosted by the SRB, was successfully organised on 29 November during which six topics of prime interest (MREL, state aid, valuation, resolution tools, liquidity and liability) were debated by EU authorities and practitioners under the umbrella of academics who presented contributions in the respective areas. The upcoming event organised in Athens on 28-29 May 2020 will focus on the liability of supervisory and resolution authorities and on the resolution of cross-border banking groups, where an in-depth analysis and exchange of ideas will be held. Based on the suggestions made during the last Advisory Board meeting, the TF will pursue its activities in order to foster further academic research on the topics identified as priority ones.

The Supervisory Banking Architecture Task Force is taking off under the academic leadership of Prof. Morais. Further to current academic research on the European Union Financial Architecture, key topics in that domain are to be circulated amongst the academics and will be shared with the other members of the TF for feedback. In addition a first working document is currently being prepared which should serve as a basis, once inputted by the TF members, to working papers on specific sub-topics and workshops. In this vein the International Conference organised in Lisbon on 2 July 2020 (CIRSF – Research Centre on Regulation and Supervision of the Financial Sector in conjunction with EBI – further details to be disclosed soon) will focus on taking stock of Banking Union and its interplay with Capital Markets Union, with the intervention of top level supervisors, including, inter alia, the Chairs of the 3 ESAs and top representatives of SSM, SRB and ECB, in critical dialogue with renowned academics in this field.

As far as the Task Force on Corporate Governance is concerned, a number of members of the TF independently made submissions to the European Commission Public Consultation Document - Implementing The Final Basel III Reforms In The EU. In addition, Prof. Clarke sent around a draft submission she was preparing in respect to Questions in Part 9 on Fit And Proper inviting TF members to comment and share input on these elements. This proved a useful exercise and although there were disparate views on certain points, Prof. Clarke’s subsequent submission benefited from these shared perspectives and experiences and reflected the complexity of the various issues under consideration. It is hoped that this will be the first of a number of shared exchanges and collaborations on corporate governance issues.

With regards to the FinTech Task Force which has been set up under the leadership of Prof. Zetzsche and Prof. Enriques, the following steps are in the pipeline: i) an inventory of the already existing publications; ii) the collection of the information regarding the FinTech-related policy bodies where the TF members sit or to whose work they have contributed. In addition a conference, organised by Prof. Enriques and Prof. Ringe, will be held on 27 March 2020 in Oxford in collaboration with Oxford University and Hamburg University on the topic: “Fintech Startups and Incumbent Players: Policy Challenges and Opportunities”.

Last but not least the Sustainable Finance workstream, led by Prof. Busch and Prof. Ferrarini, is taking shape with the organisation of the second session of the Global Annual Conference which will be held on 21 February. This session will gather eminent speakers from the academia, the authorities and the industry and will address inter alia the current initiatives on sustainable finance, the treatment of carbon emissions and the climate change as a systemic risk in finance.



Global Annual Conference

20-21 Feb 2020, Frankfurt

FinTech Workshop

27 Mar 2020, Oxford

Liability of supervisory and resolution authorities

28-29 May 2020, Law School of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, on the occasion of the launch of the LLM Program in Financial Regulation

Major trends of financial regulation – The EU governance of financial supervision and what to expect from Banking Union and a Renewed Capital Markets Union

2 July 2020, Lisbon


Sustainable finance, Q4 2020, Genoa

A special note to the International Summer School on Banking and Financial Law 2020 which will be organised from 20 to 24 July in Milan/Lake Com


European Banking Institute

TechQuartier (POLLUX)

Platz der Einheit 2

60327 Frankfurt am Main


Tel.: +49 (0) 69 7500 3904



Trinity college

Trinity College Dublin, Regent House, Photo by Eric Jones, CC BY-SA 2.0


Professor Blanaid Clarke, McCann FitzGerald Chair of Corporate Law and a Vice President of the Academic Board of the EBI was recently appointed as Deputy Chairman of the Irish Banking Culture Board (IBCB).

The IBCB was established in April 2019 as an independent entity charged with offering an independent voice advocating for cultural change in the Irish banking industry. A similar role is played in the UK by the Banking Standards Board. The IBCB is an industry initiative which followed a Central Bank of Ireland report in 2018 into the culture of Irish banks in the wake of a “tracker mortgage scandal”. This scandal saw more than 37,000 homeowners wrongly denied a tracker mortgage or placed on the wrong rate entirely over the previous decade and marked a low point in trust in the sector. The IBCB is funded by the five Irish retail banks, and its board constitutes senior individuals from these banks, six non-banking directors with experience in consumer financial services, a financial services union director, a CEO and a Chairman. The latter is Justice John Hedigan, a retired Court of Appeal judge. The IBCB is neither a lobbyist nor a regulatory body but rather sees itself as “a critical friend” which aims to rebuild trust in the industry through promoting the highest standards of behaviour. Its aim is to provide independent challenge to banks for the benefit of customers, staff and Irish society as a whole. On the basis of two extensive surveys of stakeholders and bank employees, the IBCB identified nine key priorities for 2019/20: respectful and transparent communications; customers in vulnerable positions; SMEs; bereaved customers; financial education and literacy; support for Community and Society; speaking up; staff resilience; and ethics and behavior.

BI Norwegian Business School, photo courtesy by Prof. Kinander


As part of the EEA, Norway has a specific relationship with the EU and projects such as the Banking Union. Would you please enlighten us in this respect?

Norway’s relationship to the Single Market in general is subjected to a rather complex institutional arrangement, and it is, especially within the area of financial services, important to distinguish between two functions, namely the area of legislation and the area of supervision.

As concerns legislation, we are equally obliged as the EU members to implement EU legal acts into our legislation, with no special exceptions or modifications. For banking, for example, this means that all of the «bank packages» must be implemented into Norwegian in the same way as for example in Germany. However, there are certain pushbacks on specific areas, such as deposit guarantee schemes, where we have a two times higher insured amount that Norwegian finance ministers have fought to keep for years now, even though it might be in conflict with state subsidy rules, giving Norwegian banks in principle a funding discount. It is pure speculation whether that exception is due to our EEA membership, or whether that fight would have taken place even within the parametres of a EU status. However, Norway is general in relative fair compliance when it comes to legislation.

Within the second area, supervision, things are much more complex. Here, the EEA EFTA countries have set up a special institutional arrangement, the two pilar structure, with the Efta Surveillance Authority and the Efta Court as institutional bodies supervising and adjudicating Norway’s compliance with its obligations arising from the membership in the EEA, i.e., the Single Market. This set-up mimicks the regular set up on the EU Pillar, with the Efta Court having the same role as the European Court of Justice. This all well and good, and part of the negotiated arrangement from 1994, when Norway joined the EEA, but opted in a referendum not to apply for full EU membership. Now, this raises special constitutional problems within financial regulation (and a few other select areas with supranational supervision) since the EU bodies of ESMA, EIOPA and EBA (the EU ESAs) claim special supervisory powers to intervene directly into the national markets, and to review decisions by sovereign authorities in Norway. This is unproblematic if you are an EU state, because then you have seceded sovereignty, but not if you have a constitutional provision denying the granting of power to foreign organizations, such as these EU bodies, to do exactly what the the 2010 EU regulations on financial supervision have as a central feature. And as we know, access to the European financial markets depends upon the passport solution, and you only get passports if you are subjected to EU supervision. The Norwegian solution, or work-around, was to yet again mimick the EU set-up, and use an intermediate institution, the Surveillance Authority, as a Pontemkin facade, which is to mirror the decisions of the EU ESAs. So the arrangement now is that when the EU ESAs makes a decision, they send a copy of this decision to the Surveillance Authority in Bruxelles, which then sends the exact same decision to Norway. So when, for example, someone wants to establish a credit rating agency in Norway with license to rate European companies and whose ratings are to function in Euro prospectuses and indexes, ESMA comes to Norway together with a representative from the Surveillance Authority to do interviews with management, for example. This is what is called the Norway model in the Brexit discussion, where the key is to set up institutions between the sovereign, third party state and the EU and still achieve a passport-based access to the financial markets. Now, since we are not a Euro country, we are not a member of the Banking Union, so therefore we are outside the Single Resolution Mechanism and the Single Supervisory System, and the acts relating to the powers of the ECB.

Would you please describe the specificity of the BI Norwegian Business School, in particular its expertise in economics which will be of great added value to the EBI community?

The BI Norwegian Business School is a place that has developed remarkably over the past 10 years or so, and as case in point, we have recently begun a Master of Business Law and Economics, where (almost) all classes are taught by a jurists and an economist from the school, so it’s really an integrated 50/50 model, and it seems to be working excellently. Within the area of banking, we have several economists that are considered national experts and in the forefront of bank research in Scandinavia. The EBI membership has also triggered an increased cooperative spirit among the academic staff at BI, with institutional initiatives in order to facilitate banking research from an interdisciplinary perspective. So the EBI membership has really already been a driver in that regard, and hopefully, this will also result in important contributions to the EBI community, at least over time. Beyond economics and discipline related questions, I really think an important added value for EBI in BI joining, is Norway’s experience with and eye to the supervisory and supranational aspects of the regulatory side, especially now when Europe and the UK need to rethink the relationship going forward. I do believe that this outside but inside-perspective has made us up here in Norway think harder than usual about the issues of harmonizing and integration of the financial markets.

For which reasons the BI Norwegian Business School has expressed the wish of joining the EBI and what does it intend to do through this membership?

As a small country on the periphery of Europe, we see the immense gap between the size of the body of financial sector rules that we have to comply with on the one hand, and the academic capacities we have for analyzing and commenting upon these from an academic point of view. Therefore, it is vital that we cooperate closely with our European colleagues. And in that process, I hope that we also have something to bring to the table, so it’s just not a one way street. We really look forward to this journey.

Chiostro Università Cattolica, photo by Gabriele Barni, CC BY-SA 3.0


As the leader of the International Summer School, would you please tell us about its ambition and its structure?

The International Summer School on Banking and Capital Markets Law - which gets to its third edition in 2020 – is a project born from a partnership among Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore of Milan and several prestigious European and extra-European universities. Reasoning with some colleagues, especially with Danny Busch and Guido Ferrarini (both from Radboud University Nijmegen), and Tobias Troeger (Goethe University Frankfurt) - who together with me are now Directors of the Summer School -, we came up with the idea of an initiative aimed at creating a valuable international network for young researchers and young professionals with senior academics, policy makers and practitioners in the sector of banking and financial law. In this context, PhD students and young scholars are given the opportunity to present their own research projects and to discuss them with leading academics and international experts. In these last two years, several colleagues belonging to well-known European and extra-European universities have adhered to the project that now sees the involvement of eight universities in total (Goethe University Frankfurt, University of Genoa, University of Honk Kong, KU Leuven University, University of Luxemburg, Université Nice Sophia Antipolis, Radboud University Nijmegen, University of Zurich). An important role in the development of the Summer School has been played by the European Banking Institute, that since the beginning has been supporting its realisation not only in the promotion and spreading of this project but also contributing to the programme design and favouring the participation of some members of its Young Researchers Group (YRG). Moreover, right from the second edition also the AEDBF, the European Society for Banking and Financial Law that brings together professionals specialized in this field, has been supporting the initiative.

Could you please tell us something more about the factual organization of the Summer School?

The International Summer School consists of a five-day programme in the last decade of July. The works take the start from an Opening Conference held in the historical venue of Università Cattolica in Milan, and every year this first event focuses on a different but prominent topic discussed by high-level speakers: FinTech in 2018, Governance of Financial Institutions in 2019, and I can anticipate that the 2020 topic will be Sustainable Finance. On the second day everybody moves to Villa Vigoni at Lake Como, an ancient building of rare fascination where European history and culture meet modern structures and cutting-edge services. There the participants spend the following days working in a relaxed and constructive atmosphere. There are two key components of the Summer School programme: the participants’ presentations and the lectures on the most recent topics of banking and financial law given by senior academics and representatives from the European Commission and from EU and national supervisory authorities. In order to ensure a highly interactive environment, the number of participants is limited, and they are selected on the basis of a Call.

As it will be its third edition this year, which are the already existing achievements, and which are the aspects you would like to develop?

We are all very proud of the first results of this programme which is a good example of the real mission of universities: the transmission of knowledge that finds its reason of being in the free circulation of ideas and researchers. One of the most important objectives of Higher Education is the development of talents among the youngest generations by strengthening their versatility and their abilities to find innovative solutions to the challenges posed by unpredictable global scenarios. In our field, in particular, problems such as technological evolution and sustainability require ever evolving professional skills that we have been trying to enhance with our Summer School. In the first two editions, we had a wide participation of people coming from all over the world (from Canada to Hong Kong) and durable bonds and fruitful relationships also in terms of common research projects were born among our participants. Starting with the second edition, some sponsors (for example, two Italian law firms and a specialised company in financial innovation and technology) have helped us offer some of our participants important scholarships. The Summer School Board is really grateful to them for their partnership because it has allowed young people who could not afford the Summer School to take part in it increasing their competences and skills. To this regard, we really hope that in the next edition the number of our partners will increase. Furthermore, another objective for 2020 is the strengthening of the relationship between our Summer School and EBI Young Researchers Group: the two initiatives share common aims and activities and their synergy can be very useful from different points of view.

Being a member of the EBI Academic Board, how would you describe the added value of this Forum to all the components of the EBI community?

The Summer School has the ambition to introduce young researchers and professionals to the debate and dialogue at international level in relation to issues concerning the financial field and its regulation and supervision, emphasizing the interplay among the academia, the industry and the regulators. In this respect, I really see a good combination between our School and EBI since, in its mission statement, it is written that “the EBI’s ambition is to become the point of reference for banking regulation research in Europe and an instrument to facilitate the interactions between academia, supervisors, regulators and industry”. In future, the more people from EBI will be involved in our programme, the more we would be able to promote an academic research production which is state of the art.

EBI PhD Workshop on the

Photo by Agnieszka Smoleńska


On 5 July 2019 the EBI Young Researchers with the generous support of Prof. Luis Morais and CIRSF (Research Centre on Regulation and Supervision of the Financial Sector) held a PhD Workshop on the "Major trends in Banking Union and Capital Markets Union" at the Law faculty of the University of Lisbon. During the workshop Researchers presented their work and benefited from the insightful comments of EBI Academic Members, including Prof. Luis Silva Morais and Prof. Christos Gortsos as well as experts such as Pedro Machado from the Bank of Portugal. Six of the twenty-strong group of EBI Young Researchers participated: Ross Spence (Leiden University), Maria Cecilia del Barrio Arleo (Trento University), Lukas Koehler (University of Munich), Ioannis Asimakopoulos (University of Luxembourg), Agnieszka Smoleńska (European University Institute - Florence) and Nikolai Badenhoop (Humbolt University Berlin). The topics ranged from the shadow banking, through the Banking Union design to private law enforcement in financial regulation. The discussions resulted in a publication of an e-book supported by the Jean Monnet program.

Hopefully you enjoyed reading this issue of EBI Insights.

We are are already looking forward to presenting our nest issue!

EBI European Banking Institute


The European Banking Institute based in Frankfurt is an international centre for banking studies resulting from the joint venture of Europe’s preeminent academic institutions which have decided to share and coordinate their commitments and structure their research activities in order to provide the highest quality legal, economic and accounting studies in the field of banking regulation, banking supervision and banking resolution in Europe. The European Banking Institute is structured to promote the dialogue between scholars, regulators, supervisors, industry representatives and advisors in relation to issues concerning the regulation and supervision of financial institutions and financial markets from a legal, economic and any other related viewpoint.

Academic Members: Universiteit van Amsterdam, University of Antwerp, University of Piraeus, Athens, Greece, Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna, Universität Bonn, Academia de Studii Economice din București (ASE), Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain, Trinity College, Goethe-Universität, Universiteit Gent, University of Helsinki, Universiteit Leiden, Leiden, KU Leuven Universtiy, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Universidade de Lisboa, University of Ljubljana, Queen Mary University of London, Université du Luxembourg, Universidad Autónoma Madrid, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, University of Malta, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, University of Cyprus, Radboud Universiteit, BI Norwegian Business School, Université Panthéon - Sorbonne (Paris 1), Université Panthéon-Assas (Paris 2), University of Stockholm, University of Tartu, University of Wrocław, Universität Zürich.

Supporting Members: European Banking Federation (EBF), European Savings and Retail Banking Group (ESBG), Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME), Bundesverband deutscher Banken / Association of German Banks, Ελληνική Ένωση Τραπεζών / Hellenic Bank Association, Associazione Bancaria Italiana / Italian Banking Association, Asociaţia Română a Băncilor / Romanian Banking Association, Asociación Española de Banca / Spanish Banking Association, Nederlandse Vereniging van Banken / Dutch Banking Association, Fédération Nationale des Caisses d’Epargne / French association of savings banks, Deutscher Sparkassen- und Giroverband / German association of savings banks, Confederación Española de Cajas de Ahorros / Spanish confederation of savings banks, Sparbankernas Riksförbund / Swedish association of savings banks, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.

European Banking Institute e.V.

TechQuartier (POLLUX)

Platz der Einheit 2

60327 Frankfurt am Main




Tel.: +49 (0) 69 7500 3904

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