April 12, 2019 / 4:33 PM / 10 days ago

ECB looks for three bank supervisors to join depleted board

FILE PHOTO: Sign of the European central Bank (ECB) is seen ahead of the news conference on the outcome of the Governing Council meeting, outside the ECB headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, March 7, 2019. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The European Central Bank is looking for three bank supervisors to join the depleted board of its supervisory arm after years of delay and recent criticism from a European lawmaker, the bank said on Friday.

ECB President Mario Draghi has put off replenishing the central bank’s delegation on the Single Supervisory Board since 2017, leaving it under-represented in an institution it shares with watchdogs from the euro zone’s 19 countries.

After being left with just two out of six board representatives, the ECB finally decided to act at this week’s meeting of its Governing Council.

“On 9 April 2019 the Governing Council approved the vacancy notice for the selection of up to three ECB representatives to the Supervisory Board,” the ECB said on Friday.

The job adverts will be posted on its website shortly and candidates would be given four weeks to submit applications.

A German member of the European Parliament, Markus Ferber, in February voiced fears for the quality and balance of the Single Supervisory Board due to the many empty ECB seats.

Andrea Enria, who chairs the board, and Pentti Hakkarainen currently occupy just two of the six seats allocated to the ECB, pending approval of Yves Mersch’s appointment as vice chair by the Council of the European Union.

Power-sharing between the ECB and national authorities has not always been easy, with the latter occasionally fighting to protect their domestic banking system.

Last year Italian authorities staged a concerted effort to push back against an initiative to rid banks of unpaid loans, with the ECB eventually coming up with a watered down proposal.

Reporting By Francesco Canepa; Editing by Angus MacSwan

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