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Ombudsman welcomes constructive Commission response to BlackRock inquiry

The Ombudsman welcomes the Commission’s constructive response to her suggestions for improvement following her inquiry into its decision to award a study contract to BlackRock Investment Management in an area of financial and regulatory interest to the company.

In its response, the Commission said it is considering additional guidance on conflicting interests to assist its staff dealing with public procurement procedures. The Commission also said it is reflecting on whether to propose amendments to the Financial Regulation - the EU law governing how public procurement procedures financed by the EU budget are conducted - to potentially include the obligation for tenderers to disclose conflicting interests. This is in line with what the Ombudsman has suggested. The Ombudsman will continue to monitor this area and the proposed steps for change.