It looks like the former EU Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier is becoming quite fearful of the UK’s strength when it comes to financial services.
In his latest speech at a European Business Summit, he warns the EU to stay vigilant as he seems to suggest the UK are pulling too far away from EU rules and doing so the EU should punish Britain.
Barnier insinuated, that if Britain moves from European standards, the EU will strip the UK from its zero-tariff and zero-quota arrangement.
#EBSLiveDebate #Brexit #Deal "There is no way to renegotiate this treaty. We need to implement it. No one can escape its responsibilities. The UK wanted Brexit, it is a sovereign choice, we respect it." @MichelBarnier, Brexit Chief Negotiator— EBSummit (@ebsummiteurope) February 11, 2021
Barnier said: “I hope once again that competition, respecting the sovereignty of the UK and the autonomy of the EU, will remain free and fair, and I recommend that.”
He added: “We have put in this treaty some tools to prevent unfair competition. (level playing field)
“I hope that we will be obliged to use these tools, as I hope competition will remain, in the medium and long term, free and fair.”
This warning came after Rishi Sunak hinted he would be pushing to deregulating the City of London financial services to attract more business, something the EU fear as they do not have the infrastructure to compete with London’s might.
Barnier said: “As far as financial services are concerned, we know there are attempts to circumvent the new rules through what we call letterbox structures.
“Needless to say, national authorities of the EU in each and every country and the EU authorities themselves will be very, very vigilant.
“In the next few weeks and months, I recommend everyone to be careful.”
As soon as he said all this, he wished the “best to the UK.”