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McAteer says replace 60% of regulatory rules with principles

Consumer champion Mick McAteer has called for 60 per cent of the financial services regulatory rulebook to be scrapped in favour of high- level principles.

Speaking at the recent Money Marketing round table on vulnerable consumers, Financial Inclusion Centre director McAteer, who was principal policy adviser at Which?, said he felt that this change could be achieved without jeopardising consumer protection.

He said: “I have been of the view for a long time that regulation should consist of no more than about five high- level principles.”

But McAteer also said the industry needs to engage more with the FSA and consumer groups to put forward ways of streamlining regulation.

Labour MP and Treasury select committee member Andy Love said: “The point that there is too much regulation is well made. In my role as chairman of the all-party group on small businesses, I always hear firms saying that there is too much regulation, yet when you ask them which bit we could get rid of there is total silence.”

Aegon UK chief executive Otto Thoresen said: “The level of engagement from both advisers and providers with the regulator over the retail distribution review has been huge and very constructive.”

l Read more about the Money Marketing vulnerable consumers round table in next week’s issue.

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