City executives join forces to map out future of UK financial services sector

Financial leaders from Lloyd’s, Schroders, JP Morgan, EY, KPMG, Barclays, Glasswall and CIPL will examine opportunities for the UK’s financial and professional services sector, as well as identify areas of risk ahead.

The City of London Corporation has today confirmed the names of leading figures from across the financial and professional services sector who will set out a long-term plan to reinforce and renew the UK’s role as a global financial centre.

The new joint initiative, Finance For Growth, spearheaded by a steering board of influential figures and supported by Oliver Wyman, will draw on robust evidence, insight and research to examine how the sector can remain best in class internationally and stimulate growth in the UK economy for the remainder of the decade and beyond.

The financial and professional services industry is a key driver of the UK’s economy, generating over £278 billion in economic output, or 12% of the entire economic output of the UK in 2022.

The UK’s financial and professional services sector has come under increased pressure following the recent twin shocks of COVID and the war in Ukraine, as well as grappling with the rise in protectionism around the world, and the UK’s changing relationship with the EU.

The initiative will focus on four fundamental areas – tech and innovation, sustainable finance, competitive marketplace and international trade – and the group will deliver ambitious, actionable recommendations for the competitiveness of UK financial services in Q3 2023.

Lord Mayor, Nicholas Lyons, said:

“Our financial and professional services sector is the engine of our economy – but it needs a kickstart. While the Government’s Edinburgh Reforms, and the Financial Services and Markets Bill, are welcome, the sector needs long-term strategic direction to reinforce its global position and keep delivering for the whole of the UK’s economy. With leading figures on board, Finance for Growth will help shape thinking and catalyse reform for years to come.”

The City of London Corporation, Policy Chairman, Chris Hayward said:

“Our global competitors are constantly snapping at our heels for the UK’s financial services crown. The sector is in urgent need of a blueprint for how the UK can remain competitive for the next decade and beyond. The City of London Corporation is well placed to convene all parties across government, our regulators and industry on this critical agenda.

Through our network of financial services partners in trade associations and other bodies we will mobilise efforts and ensure we build a robust case for further reform – so that UK financial services can continue to deliver prosperity to business and communities in cities and regions right across the country.”

More than 2.3m people work in UK financial and professional services , with two thirds of jobs outside of London. Any shift in the UK’s dominant position will have a considerable impact on consumers, savers, businesses, jobs and ultimately, the total tax revenue contributed by the industry to the Government.

Members of Finance For Growth Steering Board include:

Vivienne Artz, Senior Data Strategy and Privacy Policy Advisor to the Centre for Information Policy Leadership said: “Finance for Growth is uniquely placed to convene government, regulators and industry to enable a business environment that supports innovation, responsibly leverages the full opportunity of data and the digital economy, and articulates detailed, actionable recommendations that can catalyse positive change.”

Chris Woolard, Partner Financial Services Consulting, EY, said: “The UK is a leading global fintech hub but it is critical the sector continues to have access to the right combination of strong policy support, investment and future-focused skills, and a culture of collaboration, to keep pace with competitor countries and ensure that the benefits of the tech revolution are felt right across society.”

Rebekah Clement, Sustainability Director, Lloyd’s, said:

“The UK has the ambition, skills and business environment to be the global standard setter for sustainable finance but there is more that can be done to align industry and government priorities. This project will build the necessary momentum for positive engagement and help to set out the required next steps that will allow UK-based institutions to maximise domestic and global opportunities.”

Neylin Mutlu, Global Business Manager, JPMorgan Centre for Carbon Transition and ESG Solutions, said:

“Private finance has a critical role in funding the economic and energy transition needed to avoid the worst consequences from climate change. This is a huge challenge but one which also represents a major long term opportunity for UK business, jobs and growth.”

Kay Swinburne, Vice Chair Financial Services, KPMG, said:

“The UK needs to show that it can compete on the global stage and collaborate with peer centres overseas, with regulatory policies and a fiscal environment that keep us open to business and international talent. This is critical to reinforce and revitalise its position as a global FPS hub and to support growth across the wider economy.”

Sheila Nicoll, Senior Public Policy Advisor, Schroders, said:

“Finance for Growth gives us an ideal framework to engage right across the sector, channelling initiatives and finance into the wider economy with a roadmap for change that inspires key leaders in the public and private spheres to act.”

Katharine Braddick, Group Head of Strategic Policy, Barclays, said:

“Recent geopolitical shocks and the shared challenge of climate change remind us that the world’s economies are interconnected. The UK can play a leading role here, in setting international standards, and as the global voice for regulatory coherence, building on our existing strong commitment to openness, to help to achieve wide economic prosperity, stability and growth.”

Danny Lopez, CEO, Glasswall, said:

“Countries around the world are upping their game to compete for a greater share of global investment and growth. The UK FPS sector has everything it needs to stand out, but we must be bold and ambitious. Now is the time to redouble our promotional efforts internationally and shape the narrative – and future success – of the UK as a leading global financial centre.”

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