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Reply to the letter addressed to President of the ECB, Andrea Rehn, concerning the accummulation of duties by Mr. Olli Rehn at FIFA

Dear Ms Gomes,

Thank you for your letter to the Chair of the ECB Supervisory Board, dated 6 November 2020, regarding the private activities of Mr Rehn, who is a member of the Governing Council and not of the Supervisory Board.

In reply to your concerns, please be informed that in line with the provisions of the Code of Conduct for high-level ECB Officials (Articles 7 & 11), Mr Rehn duly notified the ECB's Ethics Committee of both of his roles as:

- Deputy Chairperson of the Governance Committee and the Review Committee of the International Football Federation (FIFA); and

- Chair of the Steering Committee of the Covid-19 Global Relief Fund of FIFA.

The ECB's Ethics Committee has conducted an assessment on the compatibility of these roles with the function of member of the ECB Governing Council and concluded that these roles were sufficiently remote to his responsibility as member of the ECB Governing Council and thus did neither raise concerns in terms of conflicts of interest nor could they be seen as potentially hindering Mr Rehn's independence.

More specifically, the role of Deputy Chairperson of FIFA's Governance Committee and Review Committee was not deemed as having a negative impact on Mr Rehn's obligations within the ECB Governing Council or to expose the ECB to reputational risks because the declared objective of the Governance Committee is to support and advise the FIFA Council on all FIFA governance matters. Regarding the role of Chair of the Steering Committee of the Covid-19 Global Relief Fund of FIFA, the Ethics Committee took into account that this role (i) was an extension of Mr Rehn's current duties as Vice-Chair of the Governance Committee of FIFA rather than an entirely new assignment; and (ii) did not entail any responsibilities for individual funding decisions, but rather was a supervisory and oversight function, focusing on good governance, auditing and compliance matters.

For reasons of transparency and good governance, Mr Rehn's role of Deputy Chairperson of the Governance Committee and the Review Committee of FIFA is included on Mr Rehn's Declaration of Interests as published on the ECB website. The additional responsibility will be added to the public Declaration of Interests of Mr Rehn in the next annual update which will take place in March 2021.

As a final point, please be aware that the remuneration received for private activities is also publicly declared on Mr Rehn's Declaration of Interests and the net amount (after payment of taxes) received by Mr Rehn for this private activity has been used for charitable and philanthropic purposes to remove even further any suspicion of lack of independence or conflicts of interests.

With kind regards,

Roman Schremser


Roman Schremser
ECB Chief Compliance and Governance Officer
Directorate General Secretariat
European Central Bank
Sonnemannstr. 20
60314 Frankfurt am Main
Tel : +49 (0) 69 1344 7414
Mob: +49 (0) 175 5714374
e-mail: roman.schremser@ecb.europa.eu


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