UK financial firms' future EU access will reflect recent deals, Barnier adviser says

20 June 2019 4:55pm
The remarks from European Commission official Stefaan de Rynck suggest the EU will continue to take a tough line over any attempt by the UK to undercut the bloc’s financial standards, in spite of British government pleas to offer guarantees of continuing access.

A draft withdrawal agreement suggests the EU plans to recognize UK rules, in effect granting limited access under the process known as equivalence. But EU officials have noted that, in practice, that could be withdrawn at short notice, in the event of market turbulence or if London won’t play ball.

UK officials have asked for “enhanced equivalence,” more robust than that which the EU today applies to the likes of Hong Kong or Guernsey. Officials at the UK finance ministry believe that existing arrangements for non-EU territories have grown haphazardly, and are not up to the task of dealing with the level of financial flows that pour to the continent from the City of London.