EU chief issues Brexit warning over City of London accessFT

  • The EU’s financial services chief has warned that Brussels is ready to cut off the City of London’s post-Brexit market access in a sign of the pressure Britain will face to stay closely aligned with European rules after it leaves the bloc. 
  • Valdis Dombrovskis told the Financial Times that Brussels was willing to grant the UK access through a system of “equivalence” decisions that are already used by banks and brokers in other countries such as Singapore and the US.
  • But he said that the European Commission would be especially vigilant in checking that British rules for ensuring financial stability and protecting consumers remained aligned to the EU’s own standards, and would act decisively in the event of any lapses. 
  • Access will depend on Britain “not starting to engage in some kind of deregulation”, said Mr Dombrovskis, one of the new commission’s three executive vice-presidents. “The more systemically important the market is for the EU, the more we import potential risks, [and] the closer the regulatory alignment that is expected.”

Is Boris Johnson heading for another Brexit crisis?FT  

  • Boris Johnson’s promise to “Get Brexit Done” has proved a powerful election slogan, but the prime minister’s critics claim it masks the fact that if he wins the election Britain faces a tough trade negotiation with the EU.
  • Michael Heseltine, former deputy prime minister, called it “the great delusion”, while Ivan Rogers, Britain’s former ambassador to the EU, warned last week of “the crisis that is likely to confront us at the Christmas yet to come — Christmas 2020”.
  • Mr Johnson and fellow ministers have so far brushed aside any idea that a post-Brexit trade deal with the EU would be anything other than simple. “Most of the work has already been done,” chancellor Sajid Javid claimed.
  • But by insisting that a deal must be done by December 2020, Mr Johnson has set a highly ambitious — some say impossible — timetable for talks. His critics claim Britain is heading for another economic and political Brexit crisis if he is returned to Downing Street.

Brexit: Could the UK and EU sort a trade deal in months?BBC

  • The aim is to have a deal done in time for the end of 2020. That is a very challenging timetable.
  • Trade negotiations tend to take several years to complete. They are technically challenging and politically contentious. Both those features can make them drag on.
  • To take one example, the EU’s deal with Canada took more than five years for negotiators to complete and another three before it came into force, on a provisional basis.
  • The UK-EU negotiation will be unusual in that it is intended to establish a trade relationship that is less integrated than what the two sides have now.
  • Usually, trade negotiations make for closer commercial relations, so past experience isn’t necessarily a good guide to the likely timetable.
  • Some people say that because we are already fully aligned with the EU the negotiation will be easy and quick.
  • But for many Brexit supporters the freedom to depart from EU rules is one of the main prizes. How much we depart – on food standards for example – will be important for the EU in judging what restrictions to impose on British goods. That could be a time-consuming process.
Author

Jessica's practice focuses on international trade and anti-bribery work, encompassing customs, export control and sanctions matters. Jessica's trade work includes advising international clients on fast-moving and evolving EU and UN sanctions, notably in respect of Iran and Russia, and on compliance with UK and EU export controls. Her trade experience also includes advising on tariff classification and customs valuations. Jessica's anti-bribery experience includes assisting with investigations, and advising clients on compliance with anti-bribery laws. Jessica has also taken a lead role in monitoring Brexit-related developments; analysing how they will affect the UK's trading position generally, and clients' businesses specifically. She has helped clients begin to conduct risk assessments of how Brexit will impact their businesses, and has assisted them in developing tailored Brexit strategies. Jessica also presents at various seminars, webinars, and conferences on the complexities of Brexit. Jessica advises global clients on complex issues arising from international transactions and works with clients across a number of sectors including pharmaceuticals, defence, finance, aviation, energy, and telecommunications. Jessica has also worked previously in Paris, and is fluent in French.

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