UK finance chiefs hail Brexit bonfire of hated EU rules – London on terrific trajectory

Rishi Sunak delivers financial services speech at Mansion House

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Giving evidence to MPs on the Treasury select committee, industry experts spoke of their hope to see more flexibility outside of the EU. Speaking on the future of financial services they said freedom from Brussels would help renew Britain as a global hub for business.

Chris Cummings, CEO of Investment Association hailed the Government’s review of existing regulation as a chance to open up the market.

He said: “I think this is an exciting time for the industry to really serve the needs of its investors.

“We have an opportunity to change regulation so that instead of looking at barriers to saving and investing, we can actually work much more closely with the investing public, who we know from the pandemic we’ve seen a real growth in appetite from ordinary people to invest.”

He added: “The UK has a terrific reputation for being an innovative centre for investment management.

“We can build on that reputation at home and certainly internationally for the benefit of the economy and UK savers.”

Mr Cummings said working closely with the regulator to form rules which better serve the needs of investors and businesses would help stimulate the economy.

Echoing his views, Charlotte Clark, the director of regulation at the Association of British Insurers said attempts to change poor, burdensome regulation when in the EU could take a bomber of years.

She said greater flexibility and closer relationships between the regulator and businesses could benefit the UK.

She said: “Previously financial regulation has been agreed at European level, I think for those of us who have been involved in some of those, we can see the disadvantage of that approach.

“It’s been incredibly slow in terms of changing some of that regulation.

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“But it’s difficult to doubt the heavy scrutiny for changes, it would take years and we would spend a lot of time looking at changes before they went through.

“So the ability as we move to a new system for it to become more flexible is there.”

Richard Dudley from the Global Broking Centre agreed, saying “there’s more upside than there is downside” to forming regulation away from the EU.

Earlier this year Prime Minister Boris Johnson asked Sir Iain Duncan Smith to lead a task force examining how to make the most of “taking back control” from the EU.

The final report on post-Brexit innovation, growth and regulatory reform detailed scores of radical proposals to boost the UK’s economy going forwards.

Over the period of about four months the reform Taskforce spoke to dozens of entrepreneurs, businesses, trade bodies, academics and think tanks to get their insight into how EU rules had held them back and what Britain should do with its newfound freedom.

In total more than 100 recommendations were made to Mr Johnson.

Proposals included scrapping the much-hated General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) rules and opening up more scope for pension scheme investments.

The MPs also recommended introducing a “one in, two out” rule for new laws, in which for every new piece of legislation introduced by the UK, two burdensome laws leftover from EU membership should be scrapped.

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