Association for Financial Markets in Europe

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Twenty-pound-notes.jpg This article is part of the Lobbying Portal, a sunlight project from Spinwatch.

The Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME) was formed in late 2009 by the merger of two financial lobby groups.


According to PR Week, the AFME has 'looked to build a heavyweight lobbying presence to argue on a national and EU level against onerous regulation of the financial industry.

In March 2011 the AFME warned lawmakers in Brussels that proposals to regulate over-the-counter derivatives could have ‘a serious negative impact on competition’. [1]


  • Simon Lewis - former communications director at Number 10 Downing Street and Prime Minister Gordon Brown's official spokesman (June 2009-May 2010)
  • Andrew Gowers - now director of External Relations at AFME - is a former Financial Times editor and communications chief for Lehman Brothers and BP. Originally was appointed as a strategic comms consultant for three months from November 2011 while the AFME searched for a full-time replacement for comms director Rob McIvor, [2] who left to become director of comms at business lobby group London First.
  • Michael Lever - Before joining AFME in April 2011, he was a partner with Brunswick Group LLP, advising a number of banks and insurance companies on a wide range of financial and corporate reputational issues. Prior to that, he spent over five years as a managing director of Credit Suisse. [3]
  • Paul McGhee - Chief of Staff, joined AFME in August 2011. McGhee is former senior civil servant who began his career at HM Treasury, working on EU financial services. From 2005 until 2007, he was seconded to the European Commission as a national expert on financial regulation, working in DG Competition and then in DG Internal Market. Before joining AFME, Paul worked for the Scottish Government as head of capital investment and infrastructure finance. [4]
  • Gerry Cross Head of AFME's Brussels Office and Managing Director for Advocacy. Originally a law lecturer and a barrister by training, Cross later spent eight years working for the UK Financial Services Authority, latterly as Manager, Credit Risk Policy. He also spent four years at the European Commission (2001-2005) where he worked in the Internal Market Directorate General on the implementation of Basel II in Europe. Prior to his work at the AFME, Cross worked as a deputy director in the Regulatory Affairs Department at the Institute of International Finance in Washington. [4]
  • Peter Beales - head of AFME's policy division, with Compliance as his specialist area. His previous career included working for the Bank of England, 1977-1985; FCO (UKREP), 1985-1987; and the British Bankers Association, 1987-1992. He is currently a Member of the Financial Markets Law Committee, the Banking Act Banking Liaison Panel, and the Complinet Editorial Board.[4]

Former staff


EU lobbying

AFME were among the top spending British based company on EU lobbying in Brussels, spending more than €10 million in the year to October 2013. "2012-13 was a busy year for financial industry lobbying with the markets in financial instruments directive (MiFID) and other financial regulations going through the European Parliament; these were successfully watered down by the finance industry lobby".[6] They have 50 lobbyists working on EU issues with 5 of these holding European Parliament passes, allowing the bearer virtually unlimited access to the Parliament's buildings

Lobbying and PR agencies

Publications, Contact, Resources and Notes



Address: St. Michael's House, 1 George Yard, London EC3V 9DH



  1. 1.0 1.1 Alec Mattinson, Lobbying body Association for Financial Markets in Europe on hunt for PR agency,, 02 March 2011, acc 24 November 2011
  2. 2.0 2.1 Danny Rogers Association for Financial Markets in Europe appoints Andrew Gowers, PR Week, 24 November 2011, acc 24 November 2011
  3. Senior Management Team, AFME website, accessed 25 May 2012
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Senior Management Team, AFME website, accessed 28 May 2012
  5. Gráinne Gilmore, Business big shot: Jonathan Taylor, The Times, 17 November 2009
  6. Finance industry is UK's biggest lobbyist in Brussels Lobby Facts, 26 January 2015, accessed 3 February 2015