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Britain’s financial industry plans blueprint for post-Brexit ‘kickstart’

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Top officials from Britain’s financial sector said on Tuesday they would set out a blueprint later this year to “kickstart” London’s role as a post-Brexit global financial centre by 2030.

The City of London, home to Britain’s historic financial district, said that Lloyd’s insurance market, asset manager Schroders, auditor KPMG, Barclays bank and others will work on a roadmap to compete better with centres such as New York and Singapore.

“What I feel is that there is no overarching vision and strategy for UK financial services,” Chris Hayward, the City of London’s policy chairman, told Reuters.

The roadmap will be presented to Britain’s political parties in the autumn as they prepare manifestoes for a likely general election in 2024, he said.

“What it is not about is deregulation. I genuinely believe that good, proportionate regulation and good growth are two sides of the same coin,” Hayward said.

The sector, which accounts for 12 per cent of UK economic output, was largely cut off from the European Union by Britain’s departure from the bloc in 2020.

London remains the world’s second most important financial centre after New York, but Asian centres like Singapore are snapping at its heels.

Amsterdam’s overtaking of London as Europe’s biggest share trading centre since Brexit and the decision by UK chip designer Arm to only list in New York have added to the City’s soul-searching.

Britain has already proposed the “Edinburgh Reforms” comprising over 30 changes to existing rules, with the EU and US doing likewise in some areas.

The City’s Finance for Growth initiative would be an umbrella, long-term strategy sitting above reforms of individual rules, Hayward said.

It will focus on tech and innovation, sustainable finance, competitive marketplace and international trade, and aim to deliver “ambitious, actionable recommendations for the competitiveness of UK financial services” in the third quarter.

City Minister Andrew Griffith has ruled out radical divergence from the US and EU, saying this would bump up costs for global firms.

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