The Treasury’s consultation paper on the new regulatory framework breached the Government’s own code of practice by failing to providing a 12-week consultation period, according to Lansons.
The Government’s code of practice on consultation states that consultations should last for at least 12 weeks, “with consideration given to longer timescales where feasible and sensible.”
But the Treasury paper, published on February 17, closes on April 14. This gives an eight-week consultation period for a paper that sets out the details for radical reform of financial services regulation.
At a panel session on the Financial Conduct Authority, held by The Financial Services Forum and Lansons Communications, Lansons public affairs and regulatory consulting director Richard Hobbs said: “The reason for the compression is to keep the overall timetable on track and to provide a minimum of 12 sitting weeks for pre-legislative scrutiny.
“The Treasury select committee has told the Government to proceed cautiously with this and not rush it and repent at leisure.”
Within the paper the Treasury notes the consultation is shorter than normal. It says: “This expedited process is necessary to enable formal pre-legislative scrutiny to be conducted, without significantly extending the timetable for reform.”
The Treasury adds it will use roundtable discussions and seminars to get the most out of the shortened consultation period.
But later in the paper, the Treasury says the consultation process is being conducted in line with the Government’s code of practice and provides contact details for those who do not feel the consultation meets the code.