Ambitious EU digital agenda – the Commission issues its 2020 Work Programme
On 29 January 2020, the European Commission has put forward an ambitious digital agenda to ensure Europe is ‘fit for the digital age’.
Among the key planned initiatives we should expect in 2020 are European Data Strategy, White Paper on Artificial Intelligence, a new Digital Services Act, a review the Directive on Security of Network and Information Systems (NIS Directive), a Proposal on Crypto Assets. Read more
Commissioners discuss Artificial Intelligence and Data Strategy
Commissioners Margrethe Vestager and Thierry Breton discussed their plans on 5G, AI, data strategy, the digital services act and cybersecurity before European Parliament on 27 and 28 January.
Data strategy goes hand in hand with AI according to Commissioner Breton and the focus will be upstream – “on the nature of the data that feeds an algorithm”.
The European Commission is expected to present a European strategy on artificial intelligence on 19 February.
30 Recommendations to the EC on regulation, innovation and finance by the expert group on regulatory obstacles to financial innovation
On 13 December 2019, an expert group set up by the European Commission to identify regulatory obstacles to financial innovation, presented its report putting forward 30 recommendations how to create a framework able to accommodate FinTech innovation.
The recommendations focus on the innovative use of technology in finance, maintaining a level playing field, access to data, and the financial inclusion and ethical use of data.
The group considered how to ensure financial stability, financial integrity, and consumer and investor protection in light of the new opportunities and risks which come with FinTech. Read more
The Commission launches a consultation on EU regulatory framework for crypto-assets
The European Commission has launched a public consultation seeking views on the EU regulatory framework for crypto-assets.
Currently, there is no commonly accepted way to classify crypto-assets at the EU level. This makes it difficult for market participants to understand the obligations they are subject to. Categorisation of crypto-assets is a key to determine whether they fall within the perimeter of EU financial services legislation.
The consultation looks into (among others) anti-money laundering risks of crypto-assets that currently fall outside the scope of the EU legislation. For example, some stablecoins may not be covered by the EU regulation. Question 25 makes a reference to “periodic independent auditing of the assets or funds held in the reserve” as a possible requirement that could be imposed on the issuers of “stablecoins” and “global stablecoins” to tackle their respective risks.
The EC particularly welcomes views from Member States, national competent authorities, market participants from the crypto-asset sector and from the financial services sector, EU businesses and others. The deadline for comments is 19 March 2020. Read more
The Commission seeks views on improving financial services resilience against cyberattacks
In parallel with its consultation on crypto-assets, the Commission has launched a public consultation on a potential initiative on the digital operational resilience in the area of financial services.
The aim is to gather stakeholders’ views on the need for legislative improvements within the financial services legislation with a view of making the financial sector more secure and resilient.
In its mapping of relevant stakeholders, the Commission identified industry, business associations, SMEs, financial services providers including audit firms. The deadline for comments is 19 March 2020. Read more
EBA issues Report on big data and advanced analytics
On 13 January European Banking Authority (EBA) has issued a report looking into the use of big data (BD) and advanced analytics (AA) in the banking sector. Financial institutions are keen on adopting BD&AA because they can improve efficiency, productivity and cost saving and create new business opportunities.
In its report, EBA has identified four key pillars – data management, technological infrastructure, organisation and governance and analytics methodology – necessary for the successful adoption advanced analytics along with a set of ‘elements of trust’: ethics, explainability and interpretability, fairness and avoidance of bias, traceability and auditability, data protection and quality, security and consumer protection. Read more