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City regulator needs permanent consumer reps

MP calls for full-time consumer board members

Mark Lazarowicz MP

The City watchdog must have permanent consumer representatives on its board, says Labour MP Mark Lazarowicz. 

Mark Lazarowicz, parliamentary representative for Edinburgh North and Leith, believes that an ‘independent voice’ on the board of the Financial services Authority (FSA) is essential if the UK economy is to thrive.

Mr Lazarowicz told Which? that people with expertise from outside the financial sector are key to the future success of financial sector. While welcoming the FSA’s decision to invite former Which? policy adviser Mick McAteer and Brian Pomeroy, chair of the Financial Inclusion Task Force, to sit on the board, Mr Lazarowicz warned that if official consumer representatives were not appointed on a permanent basis, consumer-friendly appointments could be replaced at any time. 

Echoing the words of his early day motion, which has attracted the support of 116 MPs, Mr Lazarowicz said: ‘An independent voice, representing consumers, should have a chance to put a different opinion and not be so influenced by the City.

‘Someone who can put forward an independent point of view would be very important in providing a different perspective from those who are deeply involved with the industry alone .

Which? says

Which? personal finance campaigner Phil Jones said: ‘Consumers need to have dedicated representatives, whose mandate is to promote their interest. these representatives must be permanent fixtures, rather than individuals who could be replaced at any time.’

Consumers can use the Which? email template to contact their MP to show support of the campaign for more representation on the board of the FSA. An excerpt from the interview with Mark Lazarowicz can be heard on the Which? Banking Crisis webpage.

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