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Deregulation of banks would see only losers: EU's Dombrovskis

Reuters

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Rolling back international banking regulations would put the achievements made since the financial crisis into question and could trigger a dangerous race between countries to ease rules, a senior European Union official warned on Tuesday.

"Such a thing would only know losers", Valdis Dombrovskis, the vice president of the European Commission and the EU's financial services chief, told German daily Boersen-Zeitung in an interview to be published on Wednesday.

"This is the clear message that we send as Europeans to our international partners, and also to the U.S."

U.S. President Donald Trump earlier this month urged a review of banking rules with the implicit aim of loosening them. Trump has been criticized for that by European policymakers, most prominently European Central Bank President Mario Draghi.

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Dombrovskis called for a "coordinated" approach to bring down high levels of unpaid loans in Europe, a legacy of the crisis that is weighing on banks in countries such as Italy, Greece and Portugal.

"The member states concerned must act but we need a coordinated European approach," he said. "We will discuss this at the informal Ecofin in Malta in April."

The head of the European Banking Authority, Andrea Enria, floated last month the idea of a publicly backed "bad bank" to buy those loans, but that idea has been shot down by Germany.

(Reporting by Andreas Framke and Francesco Canepa; Editing by Hugh Lawson)