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European Parliament Credit Union Interest Group Launches in Brussels

December 11, 2014

European Parliament CU Interest Group
From left to right, MEP Kosma Zlotowski (Poland); Matthew Bland (ABCUL); Pawel Grzesik (NACSCU); Breege-Anne Murphy (ILCU); Ed Farrell (ILCU); MEP Marian Harkin (Republic of Ireland); Brian McCrory (ILCU and World Council); Michael Edwards (World Council); Georgina Friedrichs (VSK); and Jerzy Szmit (Member of the Sejm (Parliament) of Poland). 

BRUSSELS — Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) on December 9th launched the European Parliament Credit Union Interest Group, a caucus for European Union (EU) MEPs who support credit unions, in an event held in the European Parliament's Espace Léopold in Brussels, Belgium.

The European Parliament Credit Union Interest Group's launch coincided with the European Network of Credit Unions' (ENCU) bi-annual meetings in Brussels, and was attended by representatives of the Association of British Credit Unions, Ltd. (ABCUL), the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU), the National Association of Co-operative Savings and Credit Unions (NACSCU) of Poland, the Dutch Association of Co-operating Credit Unions (VSK) and World Council of Credit Unions.

The leadership of the European Parliament Credit Union Interest Group includes European Parliament Vice President Ryszard Czarnecki (Poland) and MEP Marian Harkin (Republic of Ireland) as the interest group's co-chairs, and MEP Richard Howitt (United Kingdom) as the group's vice-chair. In total, 15 MEPs from Austria, Finland, the Republic of Ireland, Luxembourg, Poland and the United Kingdom form the initial membership of the interest group.

"We are honored that so many prominent MEPs have come together to support credit unions and the important financial inclusion role they play in Europe," said Brian Branch, World Council president and CEO. "It is these MEPs who have consistently supported credit unions and helped to maintain a regulatory environment in the EU that achieves safe and sound credit union regulation without imposing excessive compliance burdens that would make it difficult for credit unions to serve Europeans of modest means."

Separately, ENCU members also met during their bi-annual meetings with the European Commission regarding the EU's upcoming rulemaking on Basel III's "Net Stable Funding Ratio" liquidity rules, as well as the Commission's proposed directive on suitability standards for adjustable rate consumer lending.



World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development platform for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.

World Council has implemented 300+ technical assistance programs in 89 countries. Worldwide, 89,026 credit unions in 117 countries serve 260 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.

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Contact: Michael Edwards
Organization: World Council of Credit Unions
E-mail: medwards@woccu.org
Phone: +1 202-843-0702