The “UK financial system has prepared for a disorderly Brexit”, says FCA

As the Brexit saga continues, a top financial watchdog executive has stated that the British financial service sector is ready for the UK’s divorce from the EU.

Nausicaa Delfas, executive director of international at the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), spoke at the UK Financial Services Industry Beyond Brexit Summit on Monday October 28 and seemed confident about the sector’s preparedness so far.

“We have undertaken extensive preparations to be ready for a no-deal exit and have provided extensive guidance for firms,” Delfas said.

“The result of the progress and preparedness of both regulators and industry, is that the Financial Policy Committee has concluded that the UK financial system has prepared for a disorderly Brexit. Major UK banks and insurers are strong enough and the biggest risks of disruption to UK users of financial services have been addressed.

“This does not mean a no deal exit will not be difficult or disruptive, but we are ready to ensure as smooth a transition as possible.”

She explained that these preparations included creating a legislative and regulatory framework to “provide much needed continuity for firms, so the rules when we leave will be much the same as today.”

Delfas also said that “where there are changes, firms will generally have time to comply with the new rules – up to the end of December 2020.”

Moreover, the FCA has worked to ensure British consumers can continue to “receive services from EEA financial firms without interruption” through a temporary permissions regime.

She also believed businesses that do not opt to enter the temporary permissions regime will have time to wind down their UK business under the financial services contracts regime.

Delfas said that “there will be continuity in our relationships and agreements with regulators around the world, and our EU relationships will remain strong – we have agreed Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) with all European supervisory authorities and member states, as well as with countries across the globe.”

She also noted that other the counterparts in Europe have taken action to mitigate disruption and that the European Commission “has taken steps to deal with financial stability, but has said it will not take steps to deal with market disruption.

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