Mandatory Lobbying Register in the EU?

Following the European Commission’s call for tighter rules on lobbying, the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) has demanded a mandatory register in Brussels as the pre-requisite to a serious debate about lobbying. London, 29th September 2016. Francis Ingham MPRCA, PRCA Director General said: “We welcome the European Commission’s call for a more serious approach to lobbying regulation, however the lobbying register in Brussels must be mandatory before we can have a serious debate about lobbying. “In our response to the consultation on a proposal for a mandatory Transparency Register, we strongly urged the European Commission to establish a mandatory system with sanctions. This is key to ensuring compliance, trust in European Union, and transparency. It is also essential that the European Commission, European Parliament, and the Council of the EU are covered under the same mandatory register. “While we appreciate that the register in its current form covers everyone from in-house lobbyists to trade associations and is free to register, the issue of financial disclosure remains deeply flawed and unworkable. The register is also overly burdensome on lobbyists, and public officials must be held accountable as well. “It is clear that more needs to be done to ensure that the lobbying register achieves the right level of transparency and inspires public trust in the European Union”.