The European Association of Co-operative Banks (EACB) welcomes the opportunity to provide its comments to the European Commission consultation on the evaluation of the Distance Marketing of Financial Services Directive (DMFSD).
EACB members believe that the 2002 DMFSD is still a relevant instrument. Its application does not generate any fundamental problems and continues to serve its purpose to create a horizontal legal framework and a high level of consumer protection.
The Directive is short, simple and sufficiently technology-neutral. Importantly, it allows providers to develop and adapt distance marketing to different distribution channels, thus reflecting new technologies and new consumer expectations. Such technology neutrality avoids the need to consistently adapt legislation.
After the DMFSD’s adoption and over the years, however, product-specific legislation was proposed, adopted and entered into force, including: the Consumer Credit Directive (CCD), the Mortgage Credit Directive (MCD), the Payment Accounts Directive (PAD), the Payments Services Directive (PSD) 1 and 2 and many others in the field of financial markets (MiFID, PRIIPS, etc.).These product-specific pieces of legislation regulate specific aspects (e.g. information requirements) and rights (e.g. right of withdrawal) regardless of the products/service being marketed at a distance or in person. This has led to some duplication and some overlap in requirements with the DMFSD in some areas.
In general, EACB members would favour as much as possible regulatory certainty so as to be able to take a more long-term perspective of how to develop their business and rebalance budget spent on regulatory compliance with that on improving the service offering.