A Capital Markets Union for people and businesses – new action plan

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EESC opinion: A Capital Markets Union for people and businesses – new action plan

Key points:

The EESC

  • welcomes the new action plan on Capital Markets Union (CMU), approves all 16 actions proposed by the Commission, wishes they received real support from the Member States, emphasizes those that are strategic for the financing of Europe's economy and the climate and digital transitions, and stresses the importance of measuring  progress and makes targeted complementary proposals.
  • recommends best national practices be promoted in order to improve the financial literacy of Europeans, a prerequisite for making better use of the high level of savings in Europe.
  • as a first additional action, wishes the Commission to assess how European Investment Funds could benefit from an ".eu" ISIN code, thereby increasing their cross border availability.
  • recommends environmental, social (with a stronger focus) and governance (ESG) considerations as well as the social economy to be taken into account. It would be important, as a second additional action, to make investors able to access reliable ESG data and ratings without depending on non-EU vendors.
  • argues in favour of two types of priorities:
    • improve the efficiency of the CMU by creating a European Single Access point, by applying a single rule-book and by simplifying withholding tax procedures;
    • help shift long-term savings towards long-term investments by making ELTIFs more accessible to institutional and retail clients, reviewing the Solvency 2 and securitization frameworks, strengthening pensions schemes, assessing carefully the merits of the different models of financial advice provision, and, 3rd additional action, developing employee shareholding mechanisms.
  • recommends new regulations linked to the building of the CMU to be submitted to four tests, additional to the necessary "traditional" ones (enhancing the single market?; protecting consumers?).
    • "is it having positive effects on the competitiveness of European financial companies in the world, strengthening the strategic geopolitical autonomy of the EU?"
    • "is it safeguarding financial market stability?"
    • "is it positive for the long-term financing of European companies, especially SMEs and mid-caps, and employment?"
    • "is it positive for the climate, social and digital transitions?"