Treasury Economic Secretary Ruth Kelly:
The announcement is in no way a criticism of what both bodies (GISC and IIB) have achieved. I hope they will both be able to work closely with the FSA to ensure a seamless transition. The timing and details for the implementation of regulation will be discussed with industry.
MULRA chairman David Haynes:
The ULR industry remains in need of regulation. We are worried about the two-year gap between now and 2004 when the EU Directive makes formal regulation mandatory. Some companies are likely to withdraw from GISC and we face a worrying time
with a less regulated environment than before.
FSA chairman Howard Davies:
We recognise the merits of bringing both mortgage and general insurance brokers within the FSA's scope, providing a single regulator for such firms and greater protection for consumers. Smaller firms, in particular, have told us the current
mix of statutory and non-statutory regulation imposes extra costs and burdens on them.
Richard Mikula of Topaz Insurance Services:
I wonder if we are going to get our money back? The insurance industry has spent a fortune on joining fees and changing their stationery and websites to include the GISC name... It will be good to be regulated by an independent body, but whether the FSA is the right body to do it, I don't know.
Bob Beckett, chairman of regional broker Beckett Group:
The wrangling [between broker groups] has meant the risk of the government losing patience. This is yet another example of the industry not getting its act together and we get what we deserve.