Yearly Overview of the Panel's Activities
In the course of 2019, the Panel continued to deal with appeals related to SRB’s confirmatory decisions refusing access to documents related to the Banco Popular resolution. Many of these appeals were received in the second part of 2018, but new appeals came in the course of the year.
In April 2019, a joint hearing was held in Brussels where the parties were given the opportunity to present their arguments in the respective cases. Following this hearing, the Panel issued 6 decisions dismissing the appeals but in one case.
In June 2019, a second joint hearing was held in Brussels. Following that hearing, with its decisions issued in the same month, the Panel either dismissed the cases or remitted the appealed decision to the Board for review on very limited matters.
At the moment of this publication, a small number of cases on access to documents related to the Banco Popular resolution is pending.
A second group of appeals related to SRB’s confirmatory decisions refusing access to documents related to the Banco Popular resolution was addressed by the Panel in 2018. In April 2018 a second hearing took place in Brussels. With 11 decisions issued on 19 June 2018, the Appeal Panel concluded that yet further disclosure of documents related to the Banco Popular resolution was necessary. In the course of 2018 the Panel adopted also a number of decisions related to the obligation of credit institutions to contribute to the system of administrative contributions. The Appeal Panel emphasised once again the inherent link between the scope of SRMR as specified by Art.2 SRMR and the obligation to pay administrative contributions. On 16 October 2018, the Appeal Panel adopted a decision on a MREL determination.
At the moment of this publication, a third group of cases on access to documents related to the Banco Popular resolution is pending.
After the Banco Popular resolution, the Appeal Panel received a large number of emails from affected parties. Between June 2017 and October 2017 a number of approx. 300 emails were received. In the period between June 2017 and September 2017 a number of those emails were misdirected as the senders were asking the Appeal Panel to decide on and annul the SRB’s Resolution Decision of Banco Popular, which is not a subject-matter within the Appeal Panel’s competence. The requests were declared inadmissible.
Several affected parties expressed their interest to appeal the SRB’s initial decisions refusing access to documents without having requested or waited, as required by the applicable Regulation No. 1049/2001, for the SRB confirmatory decisions. Those requests were declared inadmissible as well. The senders received a letter from the Appeal Panel explaining the reasons of such inadmissibility.
Starting from September 2017, the Appeal Panel received appeals against SRB’s confirmatory decisions refusing access to documents related to the Banco Popular resolution. These appeals were timely conducted granting the parties their right to be heard. A joint hearing was also held in Brussels and with 6 decisions adopted on 28 November 2017 the Panel, having assessed the Parties’ arguments, determined, also in light of the centrality of the principles of transparency and democratic accountability, that some of the requested documents should be disclosed, with redaction where strictly necessary. While ruling in favour of such disclosure of documents, the Appeal Panel conceded that a margin of discretion should be granted to the SRB in this respect, as regards the assessment of whether or not the conditions for an exception to access to documents, e.g. for risk of financial stability, were met.
In 2016, the Appeal Panel decided on several cases relating to the contributions to be paid by credit institutions under the SRMR. The vast majority of these cases proved inadmissible because they related to contributions to the Fund whose review was outside the remit of the Appeal Panel. One was admissible because it related to the provisional system of administrative contributions to the SRB and the Appeal Panel clarified which entities are subject to the payment obligation of administrative contributions and in what circumstances an entity ceases to be subject to the duty to pay contributions.