Financial Interest Groups

Financial interests take different shapes and forms in the country of the Netherlands. For example, the various banks in the Netherlands actually spend their own money on lobbying, and creating special interest groups, using their own resources and channels. The Association of Dutch Banks is an example of these lobbying and individual interest efforts, on the part of the Dutch banks. Because these groups are often funded by the banks, leading traders and financial institutions themselves, there is often an issue of transparency, and lack of clarity, regarding how these groups work, and what they work for.

Visibility is lacking where it matters most, as often these lobby groups are the ones who influence, and create, financial laws and change. The lobby groups often are said, or thought, to overlook the public interests, as they are funded by, and controlled by, the banks.

The major banks who participate in financially related lobbying include ING, ABN, AMRO, as well as Rabobank.

ING is the bank with the largest lobby capacity, and ability, as they actually have an internal lobby department, where 17 employees are dedicated to lobbying, and fostering relations with the government, and policymakers. In addition to their own in-house efforts, they participate in around 38 different lobby groups and spends upwards of €400000 to be well represented with European financial institutions.

The Dutch government, and these financial institutions, are working towards greater transparency, and looking into restrictive measures, to ensure that there are a wide variety of voices, and stakeholders, heard, and considered, in the change, or creation, of policy.

Financial special interest groups, of all of the types of special interest groups, are often one of the most controversial, but also the most influential, as the government often hears, and relies on, the opinions of these interest groups.