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Hard Brexit in financial services as UK pulls away from EU

07 Dec 2021 / brexit Print

Hard Brexit in financial services as UK pulls away

Bankers in the City of London are more focused on finding new global opportunities than on reaching equivalence with the EU, a DCU Brexit Institute event has heard.

The webinar entitled ‘Financial services after Brexit’ examined how the withdrawal affects both London’s future and EU prospects for the development of a capital markets unions.

Lord Jonathan Hill (former European Commissioner for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union) said that over time, the UK will find itself diverging more and more from the body of European law.

Diverging

Lord Jonathan Hill (former European Commissioner for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union) said that over time, the UK will find itself diverging more and more from the body of European law.

He noted that the mood amongst City practitioners has been shifting gradually, away from staying close to the EU to becoming more competitive on a global level.

Lord Hill said that in the same way Europe is thinking less about the UK, financial services in the UK are starting to think less about Europe and more about the global marketplace.

A discussion moderated by John Peet (Editor at The Economist) heard that since UK financial institutions have now lost EU ‘passporting’ they can rely only on a very limited set of equivalence decisions to access the EU single market.

Christy Ann Petit (Assistant Professor of EU Banking Law, DCU), said that we are in a hard Brexit situation in banking and financial services.

Damaged

Valerio Scollo (partner at GSK Stockmann, Luxembourg) said that the capacity of the EU to pull assets has been damaged by Brexit, as a large part of the capital is sitting in the UK.

Deborah Hutton (Eversheds Sutherlands partner) said there is a real human element in Brexit, particularly people losing their jobs, and the costs and management of the process.

Hutton emphasised that an agreement must be found between the leadership of the EU and the UK. 

The event (2 December) was also sponsored by Eversheds Sutherland.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland