Lobby group says the next government must ‘look beyond’ Brexit to secure long-term growth
The UK government needs to do more to ensure London retains its status as an international financial hub, including helping firms to access talent from Europe after Brexit and promoting its leading role in the fintech sector, according to a finance lobby group.
TheCityUK today published a 25-point election manifesto to help the government formed after the vote in June to understand what the financial sector needs to continue to grow and remain competitive.
Miles Celic, chief executive officer at TheCityUK, said: “Securing the right Brexit deal and navigating an orderly exit from the EU will be a key priority for the new government, but it must also look beyond that to ensure long-term economic strength.”
The wishlist includes securing bespoke market access for UK firms that want to operate in the European Union, establishing a transitional arrangement early on in the Brexit negotiations, and ensuring continued access to EU as well as international talent.
According to TheCityUK, the government could also do more to tackle cyber risk, for example by fostering “better intelligence and best-practice sharing, working on cyber risk aggregation and system recovery issues, as well helping the growth of a strong UK cyber security sector”.
The lobby group also called for the UK’s political leaders to promote fintech “more actively” overseas, support City regulators’ efforts to oversee the sector and make more efforts to “address the barriers to UK fintech firms entering new markets”.
Celic said: “The UK is the world’s leading global financial centre and its continued success relies on the UK remaining an attractive and competitive place to do business. With the right policy environment in place, the industry can support this agenda, helping to create more jobs and drive growth around the country.”
Separately today, Innovate Finance, the London-based trade body for the fintech sector, called on the UK government to secure access to talent and funding after Brexit.
The UK’s financial technology sector now contributes £7 billion to the economy and employs over 60,000 people but, according to Innovate Finance, this “world-leading position in fintech is far from assured” and it warned that investment in UK fintech declined by a third last year.
It said that UK fintech firms rely heavily on internationally diverse workforce, and called for an efficient visa system and immigration policy. The organisation also raised concerns over the future role of the European Investment Fund, which between 2011 and 2015 committed €2.3 billion to 144 UK-based venture firms.