Monday 19 March 2018

Finance firms could flood here - Lane

Central Bank Governor Philip Lane speaking in London Photo: REUTERS/Toby Melville
Central Bank Governor Philip Lane speaking in London Photo: REUTERS/Toby Melville
Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

Central Bank Governor Professor Philip Lane has warned that there could be a flood of financial services firms leaving the UK as a result of Brexit.

He said his officials had been having "substantive discussions" with companies considering their options about what might happen.

Dublin has been tipped as a possible contender in attracting financial services operations either which are already based in London, or thinking twice about setting up in the UK, in the wake of the Brexit vote.

Prof Lane also reiterated that there are major risks for the Irish economy from the vote on June 23.

The Governor said post-Brexit it is unlikely that financial activity will cluster in a specific area, as no location offers a close substitute to London.

He said if an agreement is struck between the UK and EU that allows UK-based finance firms to sell into the EU, there will be little impact.

But he added: "In scenarios in which UK-resident firms are no longer treated as equivalent to EU firms for regulatory purposes, it is likely that significant migration of financial activity from the UK to the EU will occur."

Dublin is vying with other European capitals, such as Paris and Berlin, for foreign investment displaced by the Brexit vote.

The Government has also already made clear its interest in attracting both the European Medicines Agency and the European Banking Agency to Dublin, as have many other European capitals.

Prof Lane's comments come just a day after it emerged that authorities here have received more than 100 Brexit-related queries from international investors.

Mr Lane said that while the economic reaction to Brexit has been "relatively orderly" so far, he signalled this could change as the date for triggering Article 50 nears.

Irish Independent

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