Blog: EU seeks revenge: Brussels hits UK with major Brexit blow as trade impasse turns nasty – Daily Express

The European Commission is understood to have put off a decision that would allow London-based clearing houses to handle euro transactions to the end of the month after the introduction of the Government’s UK Internal Market Bill. Top eurocrats had previously said they would grant Britain “time-limited” access to euro clearing after the end of the post-Brexit transition period to avoid major disruption to financial markets. A decision was expected to be made this week but was delayed because of the row over the Government’s plans to overrule parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol in last year’s Withdrawal Agreement.

The European Commission is yet to comment on the claims made by industry sources.

British clearing houses, such as London Clearing and ICE Clear Europe, were expected to be given special permissions to continue processing trillions of pounds in euro-denominated trades after Brexit.

Clearing ensures that trades made across financial market are completed if one side of the deal defaults.

Clearing houses place themselves between the buyer and seller of a trade, and are often described as the “plumbing” of the financial services industry.

Britain is due to exit its post-Brexit transition from EU rules on December 31.

Without legal certainty of access to the EU, the London Stock Exchange’s LCH unit must give its clients in the bloc three months’ notice to move their swaps positions out of the UK.

A Commission spokesman said: “Today, we launched our consultation with member states begining the adoption process for this file.

“This is in line with what we announced in July’s Readiness Communication.”

 

The UK’s relationship with the EU has been plunged into doubt over a move to hand ministers the powers to overwrite the bloc’s customs checks and state aid rules in Northern Ireland as part of the border fix agreed last year.

Brussels has accused the Government of deliberately reneging on its international treaty commitments.

The European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm, has said it will walk away from trade talks with the UK unless the Downing Street amends or scraps its Internal Market Bill.

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Top eurocrat Maros Sefcovic has given the Government until the end of the month to make the changes.

The bloc is also considering legal action, which could see Britain slapped with huge fines or trade sanctions, over alleged breaches of the Withdrawal Agreement.

MPs will vote on the controversial legislation in the House of Commons this evening.

Mr Johnson is already under huge pressure to make significant changes with five living former prime ministers having criticised the Bill.

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Mr Johnson is already under huge pressure to make significant changes with five living former prime ministers having criticised the Bill.

Informal trade talks will resume this week between Lord Frost, Britain’s lead negotiator with the EU, and his counterpart Michel Barnier.

The pair have committed to continue their work on a free-trade agreement despite the furious row over the Government’s Internal Market Bill.

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