Treasury Committee investigates whether the time is right to relax banking regulations
MPs will use the session to explore planned changes to the ring-fencing regime, which separates retail banks from investment banking activities. Ring-fencing was established as part of the Government’s response to the financial crisis, and came into force in 2019.
The reforms would relax various requirements of the ring-fencing regime, with the aim of improving its functionality and benefitting customers and businesses, while maintaining financial stability safeguards.
MPs will hear from two figures who both chaired major inquiries on the issue – Sir John Vickers, who chaired the 2010-11 Independent Banking Commission which recommended ring-fencing be introduced; and Sir Keith Skeoch, whose 2022 review made a series of recommendations aimed at reducing the rigidity of the ring-fencing regime, and forms the basis of many of the Government’s proposed changes.
The Committee will explore the need for reform of the ring-fencing regime, and the benefits and risks of the Government’s proposed changes. MPs are also likely to seek witnesses’ views on the Edinburgh Reforms in the round, including on the balance between the promotion of competitiveness and strong regulation in the banking sector.