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Product companies welcome clarification

Product providers believe the clarification of key issues of the menu will allow the industry to move forward.

Norwich Union says it supports depolarisation but is concerned that investment rules will be extended to all intermediaries and that the same menu approach could be used across all forms of distribution.

Clerical Medical is pleased that firms will have to disclose the higher of commission equivalence or commission paid if they recommend the products of a provider that has put money into them. Previously, a firm could have just disclosed the commission, not the commission equivalent.

Head of industry affairs Nigel Stammers believes that overall the menu makes it less attractive for firms to look at tying to a provider.

He says: “I am a bit disappointed that we still do not know the start date – they have only told us the second half of 2004.”

Norwich Union sales and marketing director Peter Hales says: “It is good to see that we are at last getting some clarity around some of the key issues which affect the industry, allowing us to move forward.

“There are certain aspects of the proposals that concern us, particularly around the extension of the investment rules to all intermediaries. We are also concerned with the proposed use of the same menu approach across all forms of distribution.”

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