AIFA chiefs have called for closer alignment between British and European regulation, and predicted further changes to the definition of independence.
Speaking at the organisation's annual dinner, chairman Lord Deben said AIFA continued to face challenges as a result of the changes in the UK and the increasing regulation coming from Europe.
He added: "I have to say that I am favourably impressed in the attitudes to these issues by the EU. It seems to me they have in general a much broader brush concept, a much more sensible way of looking at these matters.
"I'm afraid in Britain we do tend to go in for the bells and whistles and goldplating and the like in every area that we go into."
He also said the role of the UK's regulators is not to "employ lots of people and it is not to charge a lot of money to people who do", but rather to "ensure the public has and can have confidence in an industry".
During his speech, director general Stephen Gay (pictured) echoed the positive attitude towards European regulation, saying it represented "the future" for the industry. He stressed the importance of placing the UK advice community at the heart of the debate.
"We do have concerns about the lack of alignment with the European architecture, which may be less than efficient and could cause us issues," he said.
"We do understand that in the increasingly important European context, the concept of independent is different to the parameters that are set in the UK."
Following a strategic review earlier this year, AIFA announced its decision to begin accepting restricted members, partly because of the changing definition of independence, and Gay suggested the organisation would be vindicated by changes in Europe.
"We might see in the years to come that our decision has predicted broadly where independent will emerge on the European stage," he said.
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