1 Sep 2011
Weber, Rolf H.
The Role of Transparency in Financial Regulation
Christine Kaufmann Professor of Law - Chair for International and Constitutional Law and Head of the Centre of Competence on Human Rights and Business, University of Zurich - and Rolf H. Weber - Professor of Civil, European and Commercial Law, Law Department of the University of Zurich.
Transparency is a prerequisite for good governance and sound financial regulation.
The article expounds the different foundations and functions of transparency.
The first dimension refers to institutional aspects, i.e. procedures
and decision-making. By providing legal certainty, transparency serves as
an anchor for financial regulation. It is the basis for establishing trust,
which is the key element of any financial system. In its second dimension,
transparency is understood as the substantive backbone of financial regulation.
It lays open the values and goals of financial policy and regulation. The
third dimension is accountability of actors as an essential element for rebuilding
confidence in the financial system. Finally, the concept of transparency as
suggested here cannot be isolated from international developments. The
article proposes that turning to the principles applied under the General
Agreement on Trade in Services for defining a set of applicable international
standards for financial services may be an avenue to be pursued and explored
in the future.