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Deepening EMU and the implications for the international role of the euro

24 May 2019

At the joint conference of the European Commission and the European Central Bank on European financial integration and stability, Luis de Guindos, Vice-President of the ECB held a speech about the choice of the international role of the euro as the guiding theme represents a change in focus in the discussions on Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) reforms, from a post-crisis response to a broader agenda. At the same time, Europe is facing new challenges, not least a return to fragmentation at the global level and the United Kingdom’s departure from the EU, amid heightened political uncertainty. In this context, I would like to give an overview of where we are in terms of European financial integration and draw lessons for the concrete policy actions that would promote integration. Continue reading…

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Circular Economy: Commission welcomes Council final adoption of new rules on single-use plastics to reduce marine plastic litter

23 May 2019

The Council of the EU adopted the ambitious measures proposed by the Commission to tackle marine litter coming from the 10 single-use plastic products most often found on European beaches, as well as abandoned fishing gear and oxo-degradable plastics. The rules on Single-Use Plastics items and fishing gear envisage different measures to apply to different product and place the EU at the forefront of the global fight against marine litter. Where alternatives are easily available and affordable, single-use plastic products will be banned from the market, such as cutlery, plates and straws. For other products, the focus is on limiting their use through a national reduction in consumption; on design and labelling requirements; and waste management/clean-up obligations for producers. Continue reading…

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Mark Dunn
Mark Dunn

Unlocking Beneficial Ownership a Key Concern in New ABC Benchmarking Report

10 June 2018

Rising concern about opaque and suspect third-party corporate ownership structures is a notable finding in the Kroll / Ethisphere 2018 Anti-Bribery and Corruption Benchmarking Report. When senior executives working in ethics, compliance or anti-corruption were asked to rank the reasons that potential third parties failed to meet their companies’ standards, risks associated with beneficial structures rose from fifth to third when compared to the previous year’s survey. While still ranking behind general reputational or integrity concerns, and conflicts of interest, such risks were elevated above questionable relationships with politically exposed persons, and unusual contract and payment structures. About 60 percent of respondents reported that they were concerned or very concerned about beneficial ownership risks associated with their third parties, and only one in five were ‘very comfortable’ with the mechanisms they had in place to address these risks. A similar proportion was minimally or not at all comfortable. Continue reading…

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Working group on euro risk-free rates seeks feedback on EONIA to €STR legal action plan

22 May 2019

The working group on euro risk-free rates has launched a public consultation on its draft recommendations to address the legal implications for new and legacy contracts referencing the euro overnight index average (EONIA) as a result of the proposed transition from EONIA to the euro short-term rate (€STR). The EONIA legal action plan addresses two events: (i) the proposed change to the methodology for computing EONIA on 2 October, whereby it will become €STR plus a spread; and (ii) the discontinuation of EONIA at the end of 2021. Continue reading…

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Mark Dunn
Mark Dunn

Global spread

01 February 2018

In October 2016 the International Standards Organisation issued the ISO 37001, a new standard that organisations and companies can use to certify their anti-bribery and corruption compliance procedures. The ISO 37001 was agreed by standards bodies in 37 countries and it is already being promoted by many countries across the world. Peru became the first Latin American country to implement the standard. One reason given for this is that in 2015 the country lost nearly $4 billion because of misappropriation of public funds, bribery and other types of corruption. The government of Montreal in Canada has appointed someone to analyse and propose how to apply the principles of the ISO 37001 to the city. Earlier, Singapore’s Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) launched the Singapore Standard, which is based on the ISO 37001. The standard has also been widely adopted in the Middle East and North Africa. Colin Keeney of Deloitte notes that six of the 37 countries involved in crafting the standard came from this region.

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