Britain cannot have a special deal for the City of London, the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator has told the Guardian, dealing a blow to Theresa May’s hopes of securing a bespoke trade agreement with the bloc.
Michel Barnier said it was unavoidable that British banks and financial firms would lose the passports that allow them to trade freely in the EU, as a result of any decision to quit the single market.
“There is no place [for financial services]. There is not a single trade agreement that is open to financial services. It doesn’t exist.” He said the outcome was a consequence of “the red lines that the British have chosen themselves. In leaving the single market, they lose the financial services passport.”
So, as everyone is already setting up, it’s branches (or is it subsidiaries?) somewhere in the 28 and job done.
On the other hand this is great, isn’t it? We can’t have a special trade deal. So, we’ve a short menu. Customs Union, Single Market, Switzerland, Norway or hard Brexit. No special deal means we have to pick from the extant menu.
Hard Brexit it is then and unilateral free trade to follow.