UPDATE 1-German bank lobby group seeks Basel 3 delay to 2014

Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:19am EST

Related Topics

* German bank lobby asks for capital rules delay

* BdB says competitive disadvantage should be avoided

* BdB picks Deutsche Bank's Fitschen as chief lobbyist (Adds detail, background, additional quote)

FRANKFURT, Nov 26 (Reuters) - Germany's BdB bank association has urged European regulators to delay new Basel III bank capital rules until 2014, arguing European banks would be at a competitive disadvantage if they introduced the rules before U.S. rivals.

"The introduction of Basel III in the European Union should be as closely timed as possible with the U.S. and in no way should it occur before the start of 2014," BdB president Andreas Schmitz said on Monday.

"Because a date for introduction by American banks cannot be foreseen, Europe should seek to avoid a competitive disadvantage for domestic institutions," Schmitz added.

The European Banking Federation last week wrote to EU regulation commissioner Michel Barnier to ask for a delay of the introduction of Basel III to 2014 from a planned start date of January 2013.

The BdB represents Germany's private-sector banks, including the country's top two lenders, Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank.

Germany's Finance Ministry on Monday said it expected only minimal delays to the introduction of Basel III in the European Union despite the fact U.S. regulators cast doubt on the timeframe due to a flood of industry comments on the proposals.

The Basel III bank rules are the world's regulatory response to the 2007-09 financial crisis and would force banks to triple the amount of capital they hold in a bid to avoid future taxpayer bailouts.

Responding to the banks, the European Commission said it would seek a coordinated approach with the United States but added it was important to wrap up internal European discussion of the rules, so that they could start being applied in 2013.

BdB also said it had elected Deutsche Bank co-chief executive Juergen Fitschen to become chief lobbyist for the association from April 15. (Reporting by Jonathan Gould; Writing by Edward Taylor; Editing by Mark Potter)

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