MPs to hold inquiry into government support for mutuals

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for building societies and financial mutuals has announced that is to hold a short inquiry into corporate diversity in financial services.

All-Party Parliamentary Groups are informal, cross-party groups of MPs and members of the House of Lords who share a particular interest in a subject and hold meetings related to their shared interest.

 The Inquiry, which will hold its first evidence session on November 22, will examine a number of areas important to the mutual sector including: 

  •  How can the government best develop a policy strategy to implement the coalition’s commitment to promote mutuals?
  • Should the new financial regulators also have a responsibility to promote corporate diversity and promote mutuals?  If so, how would this work?
  • How can the Bank of England help to develop an approach that supports this policy objective?
  • Is the legislative framework for financial mutuals adequate?
  • In what other ways could the government engage with mutual businesses to improve the corporate diversity of financial services providers?

The All–Party Parliamentary Group, jointly chaired by Jonathan Evans MP, Cathy Jamieson MP and Baroness Maddock, is seeking to build on commitments set out in the government’s Coalition Agreement which stated that:
“We want the banking system to serve business, not the other way round. We will bring forward detailed proposals to foster diversity in financial services, promote mutuals and create a more competitive banking industry.”

Jonathan Evans, joint chair of the group, says: “Mutuals are an important part of the British economy.  The All-Party Parliamentary Group is keen to help the government develop a strategy which helps to promote corporate diversity in financial services.  

’We look forward to hearing from a number of expert witnesses and will bring forward our recommendations by early Spring 2011.  We call for all interested parties to submit written evidence to our Inquiry by 31 December.”