Banking in 2030 – How will the current global trends, especially AI, shape the post-Covid19 pandemic future of the European banking industry and its employees?

Banking in 2030 – How will the current global trends, especially AI, shape the post[1]Covid19 pandemic future of the European banking industry and its employees?

This is a call for a subcontractor to provide expertise as part of implementation of the Social Partners in the European Banking Sector’s project on “Banking in 2030”.

The deadline for submission of bids is Friday 22 July 2022. The European Social Partners for the banking sector (EBF-BCESA and Associated Partners EACB, ESBG, and UNI Europa Finance) have a long history of running successful, joint EU funded projects. The European Commission granted funding most recently for a 2016-2020 two-waves project on the ‘Impact of banking regulation on employment. Analyzing best practice at European, national and company level and developing joint approaches through “European Social Dialogue”, which was successfully completed.

This new project builds on the structure and findings of the previous ones, adding however a new dimension represented by digitalization and Artificial Intelligence in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Project this project has the following objectives: (1) to perform a qualitative analysis on how the development of Artificial Intelligence and digitalization, will affect the banking industry and its employees in the upcoming decade and what will be the effects of the COVID19 pandemic and banking regulation in this scenario (2) exchange experiences and examples on the impact of AI/digitalization and the Covid-19 pandemic on the banking sector in Europe and the effects on the employees; and (3) based on these findings, to develop and present to relevant stakeholders a joint European Social Partner approach on to provide recommendation on how to mitigate the impact of Artificial Intelligence and Covid-19 through legislation and how Social Partners can positively support these changes

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Sustainable Finance Adviser

The European Savings and Retail Banking Group (ESBG) and the World Savings and Retail Banking Institute (WSBI) are looking for (m/f/d): Sustainable Finance Adviser

The World Savings and Retail Banking Institute (WSBI) represents the interests of 6,760 savings and retail banks globally, with total assets of $16 trillion and serving some 1.7 billion customers in nearly 80 countries. Founded in 1924, the institute focuses on international regulatory issues that affect the savings and retail banking industry. WSBI supports the achievement of sustainable, inclusive, balanced growth and job creation, whether in industrialised or less developed countries.

Profile:

  • Experience in financial regulatory matters with a special focus on sustainable finance;
    Good knowledge of the banking/financial sector and of EU regulation, the EU institutions and the regulatory/decision making processes;
  • University degree in law, finance and European relations; a degree on sustainability is preferred;
  • 2-3 years of work experience, preferably in a financial institution, trade association and/or a public institution; professional experience on sustainable finance / sustainability would be an asset;
  • Sense of initiative and enthusiasm to operate in a team; ability to comply with tight deadlines and to deal with numerous files in parallel; excellent drafting, analytical skills;
  • Working language English, additional languages are considered an asset;
  • Relevant computer and presentation skills (Word, PowerPoint, Excel);
  • Excellent drafting, analytical skills and communication skills;
  • Organizational skills, sense of initiative and enthusiasm to operate in a team; ability to comply with tight deadlines and to deal with numerous files in parallel.

Tasks:

  • Monitoring, analysing and reporting on EU regulatory developments relevant to sustainable finance, including EU Taxonomy and its further development, sustainability disclosure requirements and reporting, integration of sustainability considerations in the provision of investment services by banks, labelling of sustainable products, ESG risk management, consideration of ESG risks and factors in the prudential banking framework etc;
  • Analysing policy papers and legislative documents in the areas of sustainable finance to identify the key issues for European savings and retail banks and advising on advocacy actions;
  • Leading the Sustainable Finance Committee and ensuring that ESBG/WSBI Members are kept informed of key developments in relevant policy areas;
  • Drafting advocacy material (such as position papers, consultation responses or letters containing industry’s positions);
  • Liaising with banking experts, authorities and stakeholders, both at EU and global level and representing ESBG-WSBI Members’ interests;
  • Assisting in the preparation of joined ESBG-WSBI events including webinars, workshops, annual meetings etc.

We offer:

  • A dynamic organisation, an international environment; the opportunity to work in a team promoting a corporate culture strongly aligned with the responsible role of business;
  • Promoting training and life-long learning opportunities to facilitate career advancement
  • A competitive salary, including group insurance/ hospitalisation insurance, full holidays from the first year;

Candidates are invited to send a detailed C.V., accompanied by a covering letter by E-mail to: hr@savings-banks.com, before 15 July 2022.

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Digital euro: ESBG’s response to the European Commission targeted consultation

ESBG stated the need to further assess exactly what gaps in the payments system could be filled by the introduction of a digital euro, and to analyse how the existing solutions could be adjusted to enhance their value to the customer. This in its response to the European Commission targeted consultation on June 15. We highlighted the financial education challenges ahead, which will be key to address in order to continue building the customers’ confidence in the financial sector.

The response also stated that ESBG and its members are in favour of limits to individual holdings of digital euro – ideally in the form of €1,500 cap. It elaborated that a higher limit might cause a deposit outflow that would not be manageable for most banking business models in the EU and would likely force banks to de-leverage massively. The negative impact of this on balance sheet would be particularly severe for savings and retail banks that currently have little to no access to market funding. The deposit outflow would not only impact liquidity, but also the volume of credit provision of deposit-intense banks, which in the past kept the lending stable even in crisis times.

For a digital euro to be successful, it must provide a user-friendly onboarding process and it should be secure, easy to access and use, and adapted to the public. It would also require the acceptance of both the consumers and merchants. Finally, However, any measure aimed at introducing mandatory acceptance – and any eventual exemption – should be carefully assessed and designed at EU level to avoid affecting the level playing field between different means of payment and crowd-out the existing solutions.

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ESBG supports consumer participation in capital markets

ESBG has recently shared its comments with the European Commission on new package of measures to increase consumer participation in capital markets. The upcoming MiFID II Review provides the opportunity to contribute to this goal and in this regard, ESBG highlighted several key priorities that should be addressed as part of the Review:

Keeping the choice between commission-based and fee-based model: no ban on inducements. The current legal framework on inducements is appropriate to protect clients against potential conflicts of interest. A ban on inducements – that would leave room only for the fee-based model – will inevitably lead to an advice gap for retail clients and only a small number of wealthier investors would continue to invest in capital markets whereas the vast majority of retail investors would refrain from it. However, we believe that some adjustment may need to be done in order to achieve a common understanding across Member States on what an inducement is and to avoid different interpretation by National Competent Authorities that undermine the level playing field.

Reducing information overload: The flood of information introduced under MiFID II overwhelms clients. The vast majority of clients would like to have the option to waive some of the mandatory information. (opt-out), which they do not perceive as helpful.

Harmonisation of different investor protection requirements: When providing investment advice or selling financial instruments, investment firms have to comply with several different requirements (MiFID II, PRIIPs, 2 SFDR, etc.) Many of these requirements are not harmonized and it’s a huge problem for both advisors and investors.

Packaged retail investment and insurance products (PRIIPs): ESBG is aligned with the ESAs advice on the review of the PRIIPs Regulation and we call the EC to take into account in order to include these points in the Retail Investor Strategy. The scope should not be extended to new products, at least until it is possible to introduce a more differentiated approach between products under the PRIIPs Regulation and it is necessary to maintain the exemption from the scope of PRIIPs for pension products.

Suitability and Appropriateness assessment: We don’t see any weaknesses in the present suitability and appropriateness regime. Currently, the suitability and appropriateness regimes find themselves to be under extensive development, considering both the requirements from the new ESMA Guidelines on Appropriateness and Execution only as well as the requirements from the implementation of ESG-considerations into the suitability regime.

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