Dutch Finance Minister Wouter Bos hit back at critics of his plan for "banker driving licenses" Wednesday.
Responding to suggestions that bankers would just find ways around regulations, Bos said: "If I would have to take that argument seriously, then we would not have any reason to regulate anything and there would be no reason to improve supervision whatsoever because anything we would come up with would be circumvented by bankers.”
Last week, the Dutch finance ministry confirmed that it intends to implement a banking test within the next year that would be a requirement for serving on a board in the sector.
Ideally the Dutch would like to implement a bankers oath, echoing the doctor’s hypocratic oath, which would allow bankers to show “consistence of public interest and not short term commercial interests,” Bos told "Squawk Box Europe."
- Watch the full interview with Wouter Bos above.
The idea for the test came from a commission, headed by former ING Finance Chief Cees Maas, that was given the task of finding ways to restore public confidence in banks. It issued its report in early April.
"It came up in a committee that was organised by the banking world itself, because they see public support for banking is fragile," Bos said. "They believe, as I do that we need bankers and financial institutions in the future [and] it’s going to take quite a long time to rebuild public support and public trust for banking and if to show the outside world that people at the top of banks are actually capable of doing their jobs and understand risks and not just there to privatise gains and socialise losses so taxpayers come in anytime it goes wrong.”
- Written by Lianna Brinded.