EU Commissioner Michel Barnier has appointed the members of a High-level Expert Group set to examine structural aspects of the EU's banking sector. As announced earlier, the Group will be chaired by Governor Erkki Liikanen.
The members have been chosen on the basis of their expertise and professional background, and are appointed in a personal capacity. Members represent a wide range of interests, from consumers of banking services, to former providers of such services, regulators, and economists with expertise in banking, financial markets and financial regulation. Commissioner Barnier and Mr Liikanen have strived to find a balance in professional backgrounds, views, experiences as well as geography.
Chairman Liikanen said "I look forward to working with the eminent members of the Group. They bring a diverse set of experiences and outlooks, which will enrich our discussions. We have been entrusted with an important task to consider whether there is a need for structural reforms or not and to make any relevant proposals as appropriate, with the objective of establishing a safe, stable and efficient banking system serving the needs of citizens, the EU economy and the internal market. We will start our work immediately."
The Group will now conduct hearings and organise consultations, and present its final report to the Commission by the end of summer 2012.
Its mandate will be to determine whether, in addition to ongoing regulatory reforms, structural reforms of EU banks would strengthen financial stability and improve efficiency and consumer protection, and if that is the case it will make proposals as appropriate. Structural reforms go beyond regulating and supervising banks' behaviour and instead directly affect the structure of individual banks and the market as a whole. Such reforms could e.g. include prohibiting banks from carrying out some activities or requiring banks to put certain activities (e.g. taking deposits from retail customers) into separate legal entities.
Members of the High-level Expert Group
•   Erkki Liikanen, chairman, Finland. Erkki Liikanen is Governor of the Bank of Finland and a member of the ECB Governing Council since 2004.
•   José Manuel Campa, Spain. Mr Campa is Professor of financial management at IESE Business School, University of Navarra.
•   Louis Gallois, France. Mr Gallois is Chief Executive Officer of EADS, the European aerospace, defence and related services group.
•   Monique Goyens, Belgium. Mrs Goyens is Director General of BEUC. As such she represents 42 independent national consumer associations in 31 European countries acting as a consumer voice in Brussels. 
•   Jan Pieter Krahnen, Germany. Since 1995 Jan Pieter Krahnen holds the Chair of Corporate Finance at Goethe-Universität in Frankfurt/Main (Germany).
•   Alessandro Profumo, Italy. Mr Profumo was chief executive of UniCredit SpA between 1997 and 2010.
•   Carol Sergeant, United Kingdom. Carol Sergeant is the chair of HM Treasury steering group tasked with devising a suite of ‘simple’ financial products.
•   Zdenek Tuma, Czech Republic. Mr Tuma is currently a consultant with KPMG and a member of the Prague City Assembly. He was Governor of the Czech National Bank between 2000 and 2010.
•   Herman Wijffels, the Netherlands. Herman Wijffels is an economist and politician. Since 2009 he is professor at the Utrecht Sustainability Institute (USI) of Utrecht University. He is a former Chair of the Executive Board of Rabobank.
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