UK, Switzerland Ink Post-Brexit Financial Services Deal

By Jace Dela Cruz

Dec 22, 2023 02:42 AM EST

The United Kingdom (UK) and Switzerland have inked a landmark post-Brexit financial services deal on Thursday to bring closer ties between two of Europe's largest banking centers.

According to CNBC, British Finance Minister Jeremy Hunt described the deal as a "first-of-its-kind" and a win for post-Brexit Britain. He said such an agreement would not have been possible inside the European Union (EU).

(Photo : STEFAN WERMUTH/AFP via Getty Images)
An assistant lifts a United Kingdom's 'Union Jack' flag, in Bern on February 11, 2019, before a press conference following the signing of an agreement between Britain and Switzerland to preserve trade relations between their countries even if London opts to leave the European Union without a deal with Brussels.

UK, Switzerland Financial Services Deal

According to Hunt, the mutual recognition accord, named the Bern Financial Services Agreement, could serve as a "blueprint" for future agreements with other countries. 

The deal was formalized in Bern, Switzerland, with Hunt and his Swiss counterpart, Karin Keller-Sutter, signing the agreement. Keller-Sutter noted that the agreement would enhance the international competitiveness of both markets in the long term.

After more than two years of negotiations, the deal seeks to streamline business connections between financial companies and wealthy individuals in the UK and Switzerland. It aims to enhance cross-border access to various financial services offered by banks, insurers, and asset managers. 

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UK Calls Deal With Switzerland Groundbreaking

In a statement, the UK government said this "groundbreaking" deal with Switzerland creates a solid framework between two of the world's leading financial centers for UK businesses to provide wholesale financial services into the Swiss domestic market.

It added that the agreement is built on the two countries' shared "belief in open and resilient financial markets, and it will cement the open access between the two nations for decades to come." 

"At its heart is a new and innovative model of mutual regulatory recognition. This provides stability for UK businesses supplying financial services to clients in Switzerland and supports unprecedented new market access secured through the agreement," the UK government noted.

"It will also reduce regulatory barriers for the sectors it covers, making doing business with Switzerland easier than ever before," it added.

READ MORE: Denmark Set to Remove 1,000 Crown Banknote From Circulation 

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