France rolls out red carpet to banks, financial institutions to exit post-Brexit London
08 July 2017
France is aggressively wooing banks and financial institutions that may consider moving out of London due to Brexit, as the government came out with proposals aimed at making Paris more appealing.
A document presented by the French prime minister, Édouard Philippe, yesterday listed reforms to see Paris become a financial powerhouse after Brexit. Paris is in competition from Dublin, Frankfurt and Luxembourg in the effort.
Under the proposals, France plans to scrap the highest bracket of a payroll tax levied on each salaried employee. France also plans to cancel plans its 0.3 per cent tax on financial transactions.
Bankers' bonuses will not be considered when labour courts decided on unfair dismissal compensation under the proposals, easing the cost of labour disputes for French financial institutions.
The document also makes it easier for EU financial regulations to be absorbed into French law and to make sure red tape is aligned with other countries so as not to hinder business.
According to commentators, of France's largest obstacles was the ease of doing business in English for international staff, a hurdle that the programme of reforms revealed yesterday would also address.
''To investors, and to those disappointed by Brexit, I want to say that we are ready to roll out the blue, white and red carpet for you," Paris regional president Valérie Pecresse said at an event announcing the plan. ''Welcome back to Europe.''
According to commentators, following Brexit, the UK might lose the "passporting rights" financial firms used to deal with clients in the rest of the EU, meaning that employees in direct contact with customers might need to be based in EU territory in the future.
Also, EU regulations required that certain positions, such as risk management workers, be located in Europe.
However, according to commentators, these measures alone are not likely to be enough to make Paris more attractive than Frankfurt or Dublin, its two main rivals.