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Financial Services Sector: Support Post Brexit

Volume 727: debated on Tuesday 7 February 2023

2. What steps he has taken to help support the financial services sector since the UK’s departure from the EU. (903514)

Mr Speaker, I did check that my Department still exists before coming along today, and you will be pleased to know that the great ship of state that is the Treasury sails serenely on.

In December, I announced the Edinburgh reforms, which take forward the Government’s ambition for the UK to be the world’s most innovative and competitive global financial centre.

Can the Chancellor please describe any relationships, or plans for them, to deliver the United Kingdom as a global financial hub, especially given the lack of equivalence with the EU?

I am very happy to do that for my hon. Friend. The flexibilities that we have since leaving the EU mean that we are able to do the Solvency II reforms, which mean that potentially £100 billion of extra investment will go into UK companies. Indeed, the whole of the Edinburgh reforms give us the opportunity to rethink our regulatory structures so that we do not just remain the world’s second largest exporter of financial services, but go from strength to strength.

Concerns have been raised that legislation furthering deregulation of the financial sector is paving the way for an economic crash. Revocation of rules on commodity trading is a key concern. What steps has the Chancellor taken to ensure the Financial Services and Markets Bill, when passed, does not cause economic mayhem?

We have taken enormous trouble in our Edinburgh reforms package to make sure that we learn the lessons of the 2008 financial crash, but I would say to the hon. Member that financial services employ 21,000 people in Scotland. In fact, we called this set of reforms the Edinburgh reforms because they will be good not just for London, but for the whole of the UK.