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C 26 E/122 Official Journal of the European Communities EN 26.1.


(2001/C 26 E/151) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0863/00
by Gianfranco Dell’Alba (TDI) to the Commission

(22 March 2000)

Subject: Compliance of the bylaws of Monte dei Paschi di Siena with the 1998 Law No 461 and with
European legislation on the internal market and competition

On Saturday, 5 February 2000, the Monte dei Paschi di Siena Foundation approved its new bylaws, as
provided by Law No 461 of 23 December 1998. The bylaws stipulated that five individuals nominated by
the municipal authorities, four by the provincial authorities and one by the regional authorities should be
appointed members of the Board of Directors, to the exclusion, therefore, of members nominated by other
bodies or individuals.

Law No 461, however, with the attendant delegated decree and official guidelines, stipulates that the
boards of directors of such banking foundations must include both adequate local representation and
individuals working in other fields.

No other banking foundation bylaws contain the proviso that their board of directors should consist only
of members nominated by the above-mentioned authorities.

Moreover, the bylaws do not contain any rules on incompatibility; hence individuals who were involved in
the actual establishment of the Board of Directors, such as the mayor of Siena himself, may also sit on the

This runs counter to the aforementioned Law No 461 and the related delegated decree, which call for
independence and absence of conflict of interest  i.e. administrators or employees of the local/regional/
provincial authorities may not join any banking foundation bodies.

The Commission is currently checking the compliance of Law No 461 on bank restructuring with
European legislation.

In the light of this, does the Commission deem the bylaws of the Monte di Paschi Foundation, specifically
with regard to the two above matters, to comply with the relevant provisions of the Treaty and with
Community laws on competition and the internal market?

Answer given by Mr Monti on behalf of the Commission

(8 May 2000)

The Commission is examining the compatibility of Italian Law No 461/98 with the rules on competition,
particularly those concerning state aid.

On 23 March, after examining the documents provided by the Italian authorities, the Commission
requested further information on the tax advantages provided for in that Law in favour of banking
foundations and banks undergoing mergers.

The problem raised by the Honourable Member relates to the compatibility of the statute of a banking
foundation (Monte dei Paschi di Siena) with Law No 461/98 regarding the appointment of representatives
of the local authorities to the board of directors of the foundation in question.

Such a problem involving the compatibility of a bylaw of a banking foundation with Italian law is not
caught by the rules on state aid or those governing the single market in banking services. It therefore falls
outside the Commission’s remit and is a matter for the Italian courts.