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Press releases 2002 -

New Director in OFT's Markets and Policy Initiatives Division

PN 01/02    10 January 2002   

Chris Rawlins, currently Director at the British Bankers' Association, has been appointed as a Director in the Markets and Policy Initiatives Division (MPI) of the Office of Fair Trading. Mr Rawlins is due to take up his post in March. He succeeds Steven Wood who moves across to take up the position of Director of Consumer Policy and Regulation at OFT.

Mr Rawlins will play a key role in OFT's working relations with business, government and consumer organisations, both national and international. He will also manage OFT's contact with the public through its call centre and lead in preparing OFT's role in regulating payment systems.

Mr Rawlins has been a Director on the Retail Team of the British Bankers' Association for two and a half years, where he has had specific policy responsibility for the areas of customer service and complaint handling, e-commerce and financial exclusion.

After gaining a degree in modern languages at Oxford University he joined the NatWest Group where he worked for 11 years, including time in Corporate Finance in the head office of NatWest SA in Paris and as manager of a large central London Branch. Prior to joining the BBA he gained an MBA in International Banking and Finance at Birmingham University's Business School.


1. The Markets & Policy Initiatives Division complements the OFT's competition and consumer regulation enforcement divisions. It takes a broad perspective in reviewing markets that could work better for consumers. The division has three branches:

  1. MPI1  provides the central resource of specialist economic, statistical, and financial advisers
  2. MPI2  is responsible for the OFT's enhanced role in investigating markets that might not be working well for consumers but where competition or consumer regulation enforcement action does not appear to be the immediate answer
  3. MPI3  co-ordinates with Government and other organisations (both national and international) involved in consumer protection and competition matters, manages a public information line on matters within the OFT's responsibilities, and handles preparations for OFT's role as regulator of payment systems.

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