The integration of financial services in the GATS dates back to 1997, when the Annex on Financial Services (AFS) was approved. The purpose of AFS is to extend and adapt the GATS to the area of financial services, which comprises both (i) insurance and insurance-related services and (ii) banking and other financial services. Somewhat paradoxically the central provision of AFS is the so-called prudential carve-out (PCO), which allows Members to adopt measures that pursue (genuine) prudential objectives irrespective of their compatibility with previous compromises assumed under GATS. However, the PCO is not the sole responsible for the rather poor track-record in terms of financial services liberalisation so far; the unsuitability of mutual recognition in the field of financial services, as well as the modest progresses made at the international level as regards regulatory coordination are also relevant factors to be reckoned with. Overall, it would seem that liberalisation of financial services at the international level reflects the underlying tension between efficiency (associated with liberalisation) and stability (which may come under threat as a result of increased liberalisation) in the area of financial services, and how the latter has prevailed so far.
|Number of pages||41|
|Journal||Boletim de Ciências Económicas|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|
- Financial Services
- Financial supervision
- Mutual recognition
- Prudential exception