Javid seeks 'permanent equivalence' for City after Brexit
The UK government is calling on the European Union to agree to a "permanent equivalence" plan for financial services to maintain the City of London's access to the European market after Brexit, the Financial Times reported.
Britain's "opening position" for talks with the EU was revealed in a photograph of a briefing paper carried into Downing Street. It said Chancellor Sajid Javid wanted a full chapter on financial services in a free trade agreement with "comprehensive, permanent equivalence decisions".
With tough trade talks ahead before the year-end deadline for ratification, banks and other financial institutions are worried that the EU will revoke equivalence agreements, making it hard to serve European clients from the UK. The EU can scrap the agreements with as little as 30 days' notice, the FT said.
A bank executive told the FT: "If you're JP Morgan or UBS, even a year is not enough time to set things up. Anything less than three years is of no use whatsoever." Javid said in January that businesses had had plenty of time to prepare for Brexit.
Javid fleshed out his position in an article for City AM. He said: "If the EU, like us, wants a durable relationship, we should also include measures to directly address the long-term needs of industry for a reliable equivalence process. This would provide the certainty on which internationally mobile businesses can depend."