Published: 20th November 2020

New Survey of Financial Services firms: 63% do not believe Government has done enough to resolve “equivalence issue” with EU

Growing disquiet from financial services towards the Government at the failure to agree a clear regulatory framework with the EU from 2021.

With weeks left before the UK leaves the European Union, financial services firms are alarmed and concerned at the lack of progress to agree a future relationship. Financial services firms have expressed disquiet and alarm at the UK Governments handling of the “equivalence” issue (the proposed agreement by the UK and the EU that there is mutual equivalence in standards for regulating a financial service). A survey of over 200 financial services firms carried out by Complyport, a financial services regulatory and compliance consultancy firm, found that from the firms surveyed:

  • 63% of UK financial services firms did not believe the UK Government has done all it can to create an equivalence agreement with the EU;
  • 59% believe London’s Position will remain as the pre-eminent centre of Financial Services in Europe from 1 January 2021 despite Brexit;
  • 69% believe the Single Financial Services Market and Euro will be weaker without the UK.

Paul Grainger CEO of Complyport commenting on the findings of the survey said:

“Despite the fact that financial services directly provides over 1 million jobs and contributes 7% of GDP (£132 billion) to the UK economy, Brexit is about to happen and we still do not have any clear idea of what the regulatory arrangements with the EU will be from 1 January 2021. We are less than six weeks from crashing out of the EU with no agreement on the provision of financial services. It appears the Government has failed in its negotiations with the EU with regards to financial services. It has not provided any clear or useful guidance to the industry on how it should provide services to clients in the EU from January onwards.”

Firms surveyed in the poll which took place in late October 2020, stated that 49% of those surveyed had faced problems because of the uncertainty over the ongoing Brexit talks.

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