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The ECB discards Delgado and proposes Buch as Enria's successor at the head of banking supervision

MADRID, 13 Sep.

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The ECB discards Delgado and proposes Buch as Enria's successor at the head of banking supervision


The Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) has forwarded to the European Parliament the proposal to appoint the German Claudia Buch, current vice president of the Bundesbank, as the next president of the ECB Supervisory Board as of January 1, 2024, in replacement of the Italian Andrea Enria, whose mandate expires at the end of the year.

In this way, Buch has prevailed over the candidacy of the deputy governor of the Bank of Spain, Margarita Delgado, despite the fact that the latter was the candidate preferred by the European Parliament.

The ECB's decision is not final. The still-candidate has been referred to the European Parliament, which will invite her, in turn, to an appearance before the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs and will then put her election to a vote in a plenary session.

Afterwards, the appointment will have to be finally confirmed by the Council of the European Union. Only then will the decision be fully effective.

Delgado's candidacy had been seen as one of the strongest, although the specialized press recently pointed out that it could end up working against him that currently several senior financial positions in the EU are in the hands of Spaniards, apart from the vice-presidency of the ECB. carried out by Luis de Guindos, since José Manuel Campa presides over the European Banking Authority (EBA); The governor of the Bank of Spain, Pablo Hernández de Cos, is president of the Basel Committee, and Fernando Restoy heads the Financial Stability Institute (FSI) of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS).

The traditional informal and unwritten balance maintained by senior officials in Spain, Italy, Germany and France would thus be affected, pending who runs as a candidate to succeed both Guindos, when his mandate expires in 2026, and Christine Lagarde. , president of the ECB, in 2027.

Buch, vice president of the Bundesbank for almost a decade, is an economist rather than a regulator, but she has taken aggressive stances when it comes to forcing banks to accumulate capital to prepare for economic downturns. In early 2023, she joined the ECB's Supervisory Board, which meets every three weeks to discuss, plan and carry out supervision.

Previously, the German held positions of responsibility at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), one of the main economic studies institutes in Germany, in addition to being part of a committee of the European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB) and lead the Halle Economic Research Institute (IWH).

Delgado's candidacy was intertwined with the decision that European leaders must make about who will occupy the presidency of the European Investment Bank (EIB), a position disputed by the current first vice president, Nadia Calviño, along with the until now executive vice president of the European Commission responsible for Competition, the Danish liberal Margrethe Vestager, and three other candidates from Italy, Sweden and Poland.

Due to the balance between countries in the main positions of community institutions, it was highly unlikely that both Delgado and Calviño would be elected in both candidates at the same time.

Spain, which this semester holds the rotating presidency of the EU, hosts this week the meeting of the Ministers of Economy and Finance (Ecofin) in Santiago de Compostela. If this topic were addressed at the informal meeting it would be because it was proposed by the EIB Board of Governors and it would be a discussion between the ministers, but there would be no vote.

The Supervisory Board of the ECB is composed of the President, the Vice-President, four representatives of the ECB and representatives of the national supervisors involved in European banking supervision, formally known as the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM).

In 2022, the Chairman of the Supervisory Board received an annual salary of 305,400 euros, a figure that represented an improvement of 1.5% compared to the 2021 remuneration.