Santander's Campa nominated to head EU banking watchdog

LONDON (Reuters) - Senior Santander banker Jose Manuel Campa has been nominated to head the European Banking Authority as it leaves its London base due to Brexit and sets up home in Paris, the EBA said in a statement on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: Former Economy Secretary Jose Manuel Campa arrives for a parliamentary hearing at the Spanish parliament in Madrid July 24, 2012. REUTERS/Susana Vera/File Photo

Campa, who is now global head of regulatory affairs at Spain’s Santander, is being nominated for a renewable five-year term. He replaces Andrea Enria, who left to head the European Central Bank’s banking supervisory arm.

The European Parliament’s economic affairs committee will hold a public hearing with Campa about his nomination later this month.

Unless the committee objects within a month to his appointment, he will then be confirmed in his new role.

Campa’s nomination by the EBA board could disappoint some EU lawmakers in Brussels who want to see more women in top regulatory roles in the bloc after the ECB appointed Enria.

No women were on the shortlist of three candidates discussed by the EBA board on Tuesday.

With Britain due to leave the EU next month, Campa will lead the EBA when it starts operating from its new base in the La Defense business district of Paris in June.

The EBA writes rules to implement banking laws approved by the EU and coordinates a regular stress test, or health check, of leading lenders in the bloc.

But with the ECB becoming more established as a powerful banking supervisor, the EBA is trying to carve out an extended role for itself by ensuring that anti-money laundering rules are being applied properly.

The watchdog on Tuesday launched a formal investigation into how financial regulators in Estonia and Denmark dealt with alleged money-laundering activities at Danske Bank.

Before joining Spain’s biggest bank in 2014, Campa was a professor of finance at a business school. He is also a former junior economy minister in the Spanish government.

Additional reporting by Jesus Aguado Gonzalez in Madrid; Editing by Edmund Blair and Jan Harvey