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&#39OFT referral fear led to radical CP121&#39

The FSA had to make CP121 a radical document because of fears of it being referred to the Office of Fair Trading, Aifa director general Paul Smee told the summit last week.

He said the regulator had decided to abolish polarisation to distance itself from the regime favoured by the PIA.

Smee said the FSA&#39s attempt to stamp its mark on distribution had produced a system that was one-dimensional and likely to lead to market distortion because the definedpayment system would be costly to implement.

He said: “The FSA had to be radical to avoid a referral to the OFT and they wanted to show they were the new kids on the block. If the PIA thought polarisation was the way, then the FSA did not.

“The director general of the OFT has accepted that the way CP121 is implemented will determine whether it is anti-competitive.”

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