Tomorrow I will be going to London for a delegation visit to the Houses of Parliament, the Bank of England, the Treasury and the TUC (Trade Union Congress). Discussions will be centred on the Special Committee of the Financial, Economic and Social crisis for which I used work. Now I’m not saying all this to name drop but simply to set the scene of my trail of thought.
The discussions are, as of yet, unclear but it seems to me they will discuss the impact of the economic crisis on the UK and how they dealt with it. Furthermore, meetings with the EU Select Committee, lead me to believe that they will discuss the ongoing relationship of the UK with Europe, most probably on an economic level.
These are discussions amongst regulators, mainly. They are discussions between European regulators and British regulators. These are the people who make up the rules. They aren’t really the players; they aren’t the businesses, the corporations or the workers. They are the people who sit down and write up the rule book.
It’s the “regulators” such as those who will be talking tomorrow who will draw the game board in the coming years. They will place the chess pieces where they see fit and they will determine how businesses can run. (Well to a certain extent. I’m not denying the organic nature of the beast. Organisations, businesses and enterprises often set the tone but let’s not complicate things right now).
So, so far, they – the regulators - have cut back on the budget, increased VAT and initiated the ‘Big Society’. Well that’s in the UK at least. Financially speaking, they are looking into ring-fencing banks operations and trying to force them to increase lending as well as increase their own reserves. A statement from John Vickers, currently head of the Independent Commission on Banking, highlights this and so does the Merlin Project – a collection of guilty feeling banks and regulators who are trying to up their image.
Overall though, let’s hope they come up with some good rules. After that we can hope that people follow them but I fear they won’t necessarily. For them to be a real success though there needs to be a general change of opinion but I can also see that starting to happen.