On 13 July 2018, the European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) issued a press release announcing that MEPs had voted to adopt a draft report on relationships between the EU and third countries concerning financial services regulation and supervision (2017/2253(INI)).

The text itself stresses that the EU should have an active role in global standard setting, to improve international consistency in financial regulation. As granting equivalence to third countries in the financial services sector requires balancing policy aims, it is proposed that equivalence decisions are given appropriate scrutiny by the European Parliament and Council. Equivalence decisions are proposed to be taken via delegated act, to ensure fair treatment between EU and third country financial institutions.

A ‘structured horizontal framework’ for recognising and supervising equivalent third country regimes has also been advocated for.

The vote comes in light of the MEPs stressing that the UK’s withdrawal from the EU may have a significant impact on the regulation and supervision of financial services, considering the current close relationship between the UK / EU regulatory regimes.