UK strikes post-Brexit financial deal with EU in major breakthrough

UK and EU Sign Memo for Post-Brexit Finance Regulation

Jeremy Hunt today signed a financial services agreement with the EU.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) will see Britain and the bloc working closer together on financial services and co-ordinating ahead of big international meetings.

The Chancellor met Commissioner Mairead McGuinness in Brussels to sign the deal at 2.30pm.

Mr Hunt said that the memorandum of understanding would help to support the UK and London’s role as a hub of financial services around the world.

The sector makes up more than a tenth of the British economy, being worth more than a quarter of a trillion pounds last year.

However, EU officials said the deal only sets up a space where the two sides can speak to each other.

Daniel Ferrie, a spokesperson for the European Commission, said: “It will set up a forum to facilitate dialogue. It does not restore UK access to EU, nor prejudges adoption of equivalence decisions.”

The Treasury said that the agreement will create an “ongoing forum for the UK and the EU to discuss voluntary regulatory cooperation on financial services issues”.

It will allow the parties to “coordinate positions where appropriate on issues ahead of G7, G20 and other international meetings”.

Mr Hunt said: “The UK and EU’s financial markets are deeply interconnected and building a constructive, voluntary relationship is of mutual benefit to us both.

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“In the UK, our financial services sector is a true British success story. Together with the related professional services sector it was worth £275 billion last year, making up an estimated 12 percent of the British economy.

“This agreement with our European partners as sovereign equals builds on our arrangements with the US, Japan and Singapore, helping to support the sector’s role as a global financial services hub.”

Treasury minister Andrew Griffith said it was a “momentous day” for Britain and Brussels.

He said: “2023 is proving to be a banner year for financial services at home and abroad”.

He said: “Jeremy Hunt signed the long-awaited MoU on Regulatory Cooperation in Financial Services – making it easier for firms to do business with our continental colleagues.

“A momentous day in the history of British and EU relations.”

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