My SNP colleagues and I are appalled by the shameful “dash for cash” RBS scandal. We passionately believe in an economy that works for all, and in a banking sector that protects consumers.
During Treasury Questions on the 25th October 2016, the SNP called on the UK Government to respond to the scandal. The Chancellor of the Exchequer stated that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) would commence an investigation into this behaviour, and my SNP colleagues and I will carefully monitor the progress of the FCA’s investigation to ensure that it is as robust and comprehensive as possible.
The aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis had a lasting and damaging legacy on the reputation of the UK banking sector – a sector that still suffers from low levels of consumer confidence. People across the UK need a government that will encourage a fairer banking sector but regrettably, the Tory UK Government have instead rolled back vital regulatory regimes. A fitting illustration of this was the UK Government’s decision not to reinstate the reverse burden of proof for senior managers. Without this vital measure, we will return to a situation where those senior managers of large banks, guilty of creating scandals, are able to hide behind a veil of collective responsibility. The UK Government is in danger of dragging us back to business as usual.
My SNP colleagues and I have also repeatedly called on the FCA to reconsider its decision to scrap the vital review into banking culture. We are concerned that the loss of this review into behaviour, pay and culture surrounding the UK’s banking sector will have a detrimental impact on levels of consumer trust.
The lack of action in this area has not however dampened the SNP’s determination to create a fair banking system. As we approach yet another period of economic turbulence and uncertainty caused by the UK’s decision to leave the EU, it is imperative that the UK Government takes action to ensure a safer and more trustworthy banking sector.