HC Deb 15 December 2003 vol 415 c642W
Mr. Bellingham:

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on her assessment of the probable consequences of the proposed EU legislation regarding investment services for financial journalism. [142844]

Ruth Kelly:

I have been asked to reply.

Article 6 (5) of the EU's Market Abuse Directive requires member states to adopt appropriate regulation governing the production and dissemination of investment recommendations. The regulation has to ensure that those making investment recommendations or disseminating such recommendations take reasonable care to present the information fairly and disclose any interests or conflicts of interest they have relating to the relevant financial instruments. Recital 22 to the Market Abuse Directive indicates that appropriate regulation in relation to Article 6 (5) can include appropriate mechanisms for self regulation. The technical arrangements for compliance with Article 6 (5) were set out in an implementing measure agreed by the European Securities Committee on 29 October.

The Treasury will issue a consultation document next year on proposals to transpose the Market Abuse Directive and its implementing measures into UK legislation. At this stage it is expected that the consultation document will outline proposals that journalists either producing or disseminating investment recommendations will be subject to self-regulatory mechanisms. This approach should enable traditional media freedoms in the UK to be maintained while supporting market integrity.