Charlie McCreevy, the European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, has delivered a speech to the European insurance and reinsurance federation (the CEA) in which he emphasised the need to avoid making any substantial amendments to the proposed Solvency II directive and to ensure that the final directive introduces a high degree of consistency between the regulation of insurance and other financial sectors.

Mr McCreevy said that the proposed directive would lose some of its expected benefits if too many changes were made. The speech displayed a degree of anxiety about the need to meet the deadline of adoption of the proposed level 1 directive by the end of the year so that work could progress on levels 2 and 3. Mr McCreevy urged the insurance industry to work to find a satisfactory solution to the issues raised on group supervision and the group support regime.

It is expected that agreement between the European Council and Parliament will take place this autumn, before the results of QIS4 are published. CEIOPS is expected to deliver the final advice on implementing measures by October 2009. These implementing measures will provide the real detail of the directive.

For further information: Solvency II: a window of opportunity for European consumers and industry