Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2010-06-15-Speech-2-452"

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"Mr President, Mr Barnier, thank you for speaking in German. Firstly, I would like to say that the crises that we have yet again experienced once more raise certain key issues. In addition to what has already been said, I would like to particularly re-emphasise certain aspects. One is that the rating agencies have frequently turned out to be guessing agencies; in other words, agencies that were no more capable of assessing the risks than anyone else. Consequently, we must considerably reduce the importance that is placed on the assessments made by these rating agencies as compared with other assessments in the market. A second central problem that has emerged is the oligopolisation of this market. There are only a few serious providers. As a result, it makes sense to expand the number of providers and also their backgrounds. To this extent, your comments, Mr Barnier, on bringing more players into the market – which have also been echoed by others here – make sense. Thirdly, we have the central problem of incentives, about which little has been said so far in this debate. For what do we find among the rating agencies? A situation in which those who give the ratings are selected by their clients from among the few agencies that exist and are paid for doing so. It is as akin to university students visiting their professor before their exams and negotiating payment with him, with everyone wondering afterwards why the grades were systematically so high. We need to look at this problem of incentives. I know that the Commission is also giving some thought to how we can ensure that those that offer a financial product can no longer select, as it were, their rating agency. This takes us to the heart of the reforms required in those sectors where private providers are involved – those that are subjected to rating; in other words, in the areas other than government bonds. We need to remove this false incentive system. Rather than replacing a private oligopoly with a public monopoly, as has sometimes been suggested by those on the left, we should ensure that a public agency ensures that different players are continually selected to provide ratings and that the quality of the ratings is made public and systematically checked. Mr Barnier, I look forward to your proposals. I hope that these proposals will result in us being able to systematically resolve the problems that remain in this area following previous efforts, including those of Mr Gauzès and the previous Commission and the Council – for which we are grateful; and that we are able to do so without creating a new monopoly, but rather by consistently getting to grips with the problems of incentives and regulation."@en1

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