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From the First Banking Directive to the Banking Union: The Building up of a European Banking Market

Pierre-Henri Cassou Ancien membre du Comité consultatif bancaire (1984-2001), Group of Experts on Banking Issues (2010-2011). Contact :

Since the enactment, 40 years ago, of the First Banking Coordination Directive, three main decisions contributed particularly to the project of building up a European banking market: the Luxemburg Treaty which ensured the freedom of establishment and that of service offerings from 1993 on, the Maastricht Treaty, which founded the Economic and Monetary Union and on which was based the creation of the Euro in 1999, lastly the launching, in 2012, of the Banking Union in the Eurozone.

Today, this project is, by and large, a reality. All credit institutions within the European Union are now subject to a single prudential regulation and may offer to their clients a common system of payment means (the “SEPA” system). But, within Europe, the Eurozone is the place where the building up of a banking market is the most advanced, since both the refinancing and the supervision of the banks are there totally unified.

To complete this project, new steps are nevertheless still needed, inter alia the setting up of the proposed Capital Market Union.

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