City Corporation calls on Conservatives to avoid damaging no-deal Brexit

The City of London Corporation is calling on the Conservative Party to avoid a no-deal exit from the European Union (EU) by working with Parliamentarians and EU authorities to secure a deal that works for businesses and households on both sides of the Channel.

The City Corporation is today [30 September] hosting a roundtable at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester focusing on the future of UK financial services after Brexit. John Glen MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, will be speaking at the event, which is being held in partnership with the Centre for Policy Studies.

Key topics of discussion will be avoiding a no-deal exit and mitigating remaining cliff-edge risks for the sector. Finding a solution to outstanding issues such as cross border data flows, contract repapering, uncleared derivatives and share and data trading obligations is paramount to avoiding damaging disruption for customers and clients.

In addition, although the UK and EU authorities have taken steps to alleviate the risks around continued access to UK and EU clearing services, the current arrangement of temporary recognition for UK clearing houses is set to expire in March 2020, leaving another potential cliff-edge.

The City Corporation is also urging businesses to make sure their contingency plans are up-to-date and thorough. Recent data from the Federation of Small Businesses showed that 39% of small firms believe a no-deal scenario will negatively impact them, while only one in five (21%) have planned or prepared for anticipated issues. Advice from the Government and other organisations on planning for a no-deal scenario is available via the City Corporation website.

Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at the City of London Corporation, said:

“As we enter a pivotal month, the risk of a no-deal still looms large. Almost daily we are met with stark reminders of the economic damage a disorderly exit could cause, as the Government’s own assessment shows. And as time passes, the uncertainty that is holding business hostage remains, leaving companies unable to make everyday decisions.

“Big institutions have been preparing since day one, but no amount of preparation can mitigate some of the remaining cliff-edges. Unresolved issues on data transfers, repapering of contracts, and derivative and share trading obligations will all pose serious challenges for business without further Government and EU intervention.

“What we need to see now is progress. The London success story will continue whatever the outcome of Brexit. But in order to give ourselves the best possible start post-Brexit, Government must fight tooth-and-nail to avoid a no-deal. We are urging the Conservative Party to do all that they can to avoid a disorderly exit, working with their fellow parliamentarians and the EU, so that the industry can have both clarity and security as soon as possible.”

Notes to editors

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK.