EU Finance Ministers had their first ECOFIN level discussion on Single Resolution Mechanism in Vilnius

14 September 2013, Last updated at, 07:43 EEST
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author: eu2013.lt

EU Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors focussed their attention on the Banking Union, financing SMEs and the EU economic outlook on the first day of the Informal ECOFIN meeting in Vilnius.

During the working lunch, the EU Finance Ministers discussed the Single Resolution Mechanism (SRM) for the first time at the the ECOFIN level. The SRM is one of the key elements of the Banking Union.

“Swift progress towards the Banking Union is essential to ensure financial stability and growth in the internal market, as well as sound framework of financial system. In the light of this, the Single Resolution Mechanism must be agreed as soon as possible”, stated Rimantas Šadžius, Lithuanian Finance Minister and Chair of the ECOFIN Council. The Minister also stressed this earlier today at the Eurogroup meeting, where he was invited to discuss the issues related to the Banking Union. The Lithuanian Presidency is concentrating efforts on reaching general approach on SRM in the Council in November 2013.

The ECOFIN ministers exchanged views on ways and means to improve access to funding for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the short and medium term. Main attention was given to the options of innovative risk-sharing instruments provided by the European Commission and European Investment Bank (EIB), and presented in the June ECOFIN and European Council. This agenda item will be followed-up at the October ECOFIN meeting.

“We share the broad consensus regarding the need to support the SMEs by providing proper access to financing. Today we had a fruitful discussion on how lending to SMEs can be better facilitated and formed indications and directions for this area in the nearest future”, said the Lithuanian Finance Minister. 

Friday’s session also included a discussion on the economic outlook and financial stability of the EU, the main priorities of structural reforms, a follow-up to the G20 Leaders’ Summit, and preparation for the IMF/WB Annual Meetings and the G20 ministerial meeting.
 

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