A peek into the heart of Finance Finland’s lobbying – key EU priorities

  • Finance Finland (FFI) currently monitors 87 legislative projects, at least 50 of which are EU-based. This shows the importance of the European regulatory framework.
  • The key priorities of Finance Finland’s EU lobbying are focused on three themes: better regulation, the vital role of finance to the society and climate change mitigation, and the opportunities enabled by digitalisation.
  • The next elections to the European Parliament will be held in 2024, which means there are only two years left in the current legislative period.

Finance Finland represents all the different industries of the financial services sector, and our priorities therefore include a wide range of topics that concern the sector. One of the cornerstones of our lobbying is to bring recognition to the sector’s significant role as a provider of financing for businesses and consumers, a responsible investor and an insurer of risks.

“The financial sector has a crucial role in supporting the European economic recovery from the coronavirus crisis. In our opinion, the objective of economic recovery needs to be sufficiently acknowledged by policymakers. This is especially relevant in the Commission’s Basel III and Solvency II proposals, for example”, says Mari Pekonen-Ranta, director of EU affairs at Finance Finland.

The Finnish financial sector also hopes that the principles of the better regulation agenda remain fundamental and are turned into practice in all legislative bodies of the EU. New regulation must also ensure sufficient time for implementation.

An integrated Banking Union promotes stability

The Finnish financial sector supports the deepening of the Banking Union and believes it will increase the stability of the euro area. The financial sector is in favour of using market discipline as a tool to steer the economic policies of the EU Member States as well as to underline the countries’ own responsibility for their finances.

“Any decisions to expand risk sharing must be carefully deliberated, justified and also acceptable by the citizens”, Pekonen-Ranta points out.

Saving the climate with finance

As a major investor, lender and bearer of insurance risk, the financial sector is in a key role in global climate action. Sustainable finance plays a major part in the transition towards climate-neutral economy. A large volume of sustainable finance regulation is currently being prepared in the EU, and we endorse it as important.

The regulation of sustainable finance should incentivise and encourage. It must maintain market flexibility and enable different ways of doing sustainable finance. Sustainable growth also requires that business operations take into account environmental and social responsibility and good governance.

Uniform rules for the digital market

Finance Finland considers it important that the rules of the digital single market are consistently fair and equal and that there is a level playing field for all the different sectors and market participants. The regulation of the digital single market must not suffocate new activity but must instead enable new, innovative business models.

“A regulatory environment that promotes innovation must be technology-neutral, flexible and principle-based”, Pekonen-Ranta summarises.

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