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Calling on EU bodies to assess impact of legislation on SME lending

Calling on EU bodies to assess impact of legislation on SME lending

ESBG, UEAPME and UNI Europa Finance joint letter argues jobs, growth at stake




​​​​>> Read the letter








​BRUSSELS, 13 March 2017 – ESBG, UEAPME and UNI Europa Finance today sent a joint letter to the European Commission and members of the European Parliament calling for an impact assessment of EU legislation on banks' ability to lend to households and SMEs, which in turn fosters growth and jobs.

The trio argue in the letter that proportionately higher compliance costs that locally-focused banks are facing will have a direct effect on SMEs and their employees. By applying the principle of proportionality to some areas of the Commission's capital requirements package review (CRR II and CRD V), such as reporting and disclosure, the SME Supporting Factor, the counterparty credit risk and corporate governance, households and SME lending would benefit from a greater pool of capital available for lending.

The Commission and Parliament should consider less burdensome disclosure requirements for smaller, less-complex financial institutions, extending the scope of the SME Supporting Factor, revisiting the approaches to counterparty credit risk (CCR), adopting a pragmatic approach on corporate governance, for example regarding the high-level committees.

​Savings and Retail Banks and SME lending

Savings and retail banks are driven to convert deposits from local communities into loans that finance the real economy. ESBG member savings and retail banks lend to one in three EU-based SMEs, worth more than €500 billion – roughly the value of Sweden's economic gross domestic product. At member state level, ESBG member the German Savings Banks Association accounts for 42.6 per cent of the market share amongst SMEs in Germany. In France, ESBG member Groupe BPCE is the top bank for SMEs within the hexagone, with a 38 per cent market share. In Spain, around 60 per cent of small and medium-sized enterprises are ESBG member CECA's customers.​

​​​​>> Read the letter

>> See: Case study on German SME

>> Read: Banking. Serving. Thriving.


SME finance; Proportionality; European Institutions; European Supervisory Authorities (EBA-ESMA); Capital Requirements Directive and Regulation; Risk management