A vital component in this respect is the three-layered consultation structure.
- strategic consultation about relevant developments and their implications in the medium term, in the informal management forum;
- consultation with stakeholders about policy intentions and the budget, by way of the 'Advisory Panel of Representative Organisations' and
- in expert committees, in which specific knowledge from the market concerning new tasks is gathered.
The Advisory Panel of Representative Organisations meets at least twice a year to ask questions and give advice about the AFM's annual plan, budget and levies, and its Annual Report and Accounts. The members of this panel come from organisations that representparties with a stake in AFM supervision. There are also annual consultations with a number of CEOs of leading market parties, which are intended to obtain feedback about the AFM's implementation of its supervisory tasks, as well as about priorities for supervisory tasks and the development of supervision.
The Capital Market Committee advises the AFM on case-specific application of rules, legislative aspects andinterpretations in the area of public offerings, questions relating to market abuse and questions relating to prospectuses. The Committee also gives advice on the main lines of policy in relation to supervision of financial reporting and supervision of accountants' organisations. In February 2006, the AFM also set up a Financial Consumers Committee, which advises the AFM on its supervisory and information-giving tasks as part of the AFM's duties in relation to financial consumers. The Committee is also responsible for discussing policy intentions, draft regulations and issues of interpretation from the point of view of the consumer.
The AFMhas entered into a covenant with its fellow supervisory authority De Nederlandsche Bank (the Dutch Central Bank, or DNB) regarding the distribution of tasks and operational cooperation. It has also concluded covenants with Euronext, regarding the coordination of activities involved in the supervision of public takeover bids, and with the Dutch Securities Institute (DSI), regarding cooperation in the so-called 'pre-employment' screening for securities institutionsthat are under supervision. In addition, the AFM has signed Memoranda of Understanding with several foreign supervisory authorities, setting out cooperation agreements, e.g. relating to clearing & settlement.