Deputy Chairman of FECIF
How Vox Populi in Europe is (sometimes) being portrayed
Two weeks ago, my home city of Prague hosted an important event: the Joint ESAs’ Consumer Protection Day. This is an event that forms an important part of the regulation agenda and according to its organisers should “discuss issues related to consumer and investor protection and financial innovation”. Well, interesting proposals definitely could have been heard, no doubt about that.
I shall not go into detail over the speeches made by MEP Sven Giegold and other representatives of the heavy anti-industry and pro-regulation European establishment. Comrade Giegold and his fellow hardliners are, at least, clearly distinguished as an extreme even among regulation-friendly EU politicians. What made me more worried, however, was the presentation of Mrs. Monique Goyens, director general of BEUC – one of the most powerful European consumer associations. In short, her speech was focusing on how markets fail and more regulation is needed, culminating in demand for a new Consumer protection bureau (sic) at the EU level. No surprise here, but my attention was instantly caught by examples of poor practices among individual member states, which formed the bulk of Mrs. Goyens argument.
Amongst many comments, two statements in particular prompted me to immediately start a Google search...