On 21 March 2017, the Commission launched a public consultation on the future of the European Supervisory Authorities (“ESAs”). The overall objective is to strenghten the coherence of the supervisory framework in order to boost the development of capital markets, given that Brexit will redefine the European financial landscape.

The consultation paper covers the three existing ESAs, namely the European Securities and Markets Authority (“ESMA”), the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (“EIOPA”), and the European Banking Authority (“EBA”) and aims at identifying areas where the ESAs’ efficiency and effectiveness can be improved. It suggests potential budget increases for the ESAs, along with an overhaul of their powers and governance arrangements.

The consultation paper also raises the question of a potential merger of EIOPA and EBA, which would be associated with stronger consumer protection powers for ESMA. Simultaneously, it underlines the need for strong and central financial supervision in light of capital markets partly relocating from the United Kingdom to other jurisdictions as a result of Brexit.

The public consultation runs until 16 May 2017.