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Spain: Lobby registry off to a shaky start

 |  September 26, 2016

Only six months ago, Spain’s National Commission for Markets and Competition launched a ground-breaking voluntary registry for Interest Groups or ‘Lobbyists’, meant to increase transparency in government, particularly where related to State contracts and bidding processes. However, to date and despite over 300 companies having taken part, only three of the country’s top businesses have so far joined the registry.

Only Telefónica, Red Eléctrica de España and Cellnex Telecom, among Spain’s Top 35 (and listed in the Spanish IBEX stock exchange) have joined the registration, a brainchild of the institution currently led by Dr. José María Marín Quemada. So far, despite the intentions for transparency and openness espoused by the program, a large majority of those registered so far belong to discreet business guilds – not the opaque private companies originally targeted.

The CNMC has diminished these concerns, citing the large number and variety of those companies already part of the registry. However, it agrees that “there should be a greater number of these organizations, the backbone of the country’s economic life, who should join this – a gamble for a transparent relationship with their supervising institution and the market regulator. This would guarantee a healthy level of competition for our economy.” By signing on to the registry companies implicitly accept a series of ethical guidelines, elaborated by CNMC members.

Full Content: El Economista

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