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EU Lawmakers Set Oct. 22 Date for Mersch Hearing on ECB Post

The European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee will hold a hearing on Oct. 22 to consider the nomination of Luxembourg’s central bank chief Yves Mersch to fill a vacancy on the European Central Bank’s Executive Board.

Mersch’s nomination was put in limbo last month when the committee objected to the lack of female candidates for the post and postponed a planned hearing. Today the committee decided to set a date and prepare an opinion on his candidacy, committee head Sharon Bowles said by e-mail in Brussels.

The ECB seat has been empty since June 1. Mersch, the euro region’s longest serving central banker, was selected by European finance ministers in July. The assembly’s decision to proceed with the appointment process comes after ECB President Mario Draghi and Executive Board member Joerg Asmussen called for a speedy resolution to the impasse.

“In this time of crisis, the Executive Board should be completed and this nomination should go through,” Draghi told lawmakers yesterday.

European leaders will confirm Mersch’s appointment soon, a European Union official said today on condition of anonymity. The Luxembourg Central Bank declined to comment.

Bowles on Oct. 7 joined the race to succeed Mervyn King as governor of the Bank of England.

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