Monday 26 August 2019

Dublin has lost to Paris in the race to secure EU banking authority

The European Banking Authority is based at One Canada Square in Canary Wharf, London
The European Banking Authority is based at One Canada Square in Canary Wharf, London

Sarah Collins in Brussels

Dublin has narrowly lost out to Paris in a nail-biting race to secure the EU’s banking agency post-Brexit.

A Eurovision-style points contest on Monday ended in a draw between Paris and Dublin, with the French capital taking the prize after the two countries were forced to draw lots. 

Paris and Dublin had beaten six others cities to the top spot, including Frankfurt, Brussels and Luxembourg.

The European Commission said the votes were the “the first visible result” of Brexit.

The London-based European Banking Authority (EBA) oversees financial supervision for the entire EU, carrying out bloc-wide bank stress tests and enforcing capital requirements.

Dublin had only an outside chance of winning after securing 28 first preference points from its EU counterparts in a first round of voting, against 34 for Paris and 32 for Frankfurt.

A second round saw Dublin trump Paris, bagging 13 points to the French city’s 10. The final vote resulted in a 13-all tie-break before they drew lots.

Earlier on Monday, the government had dropped its bid to host the much larger European Medicines Agency (EMA) as a deliberate ploy to help it land the banking regulator.

Amsterdam won the EMA run-off, wooing its 900-plus staff with promises of over 40,000 hotel rooms, brand new high-rise office space and proximity to the airport.

The Dutch city beat odds-on favourites Milan and Bratislava to seize the medicines prize.

The Brexodus will begin immediately, with both agencies having to complete their moves from London by 30 March 2019, the day after Brexit day.

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