Financial Services (Implementation of Legislation) Bill [HL] - Committee (1st Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:30 pm on 8th January 2019.

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Photo of Lord Bates Lord Bates The Minister of State, Department for International Development 5:30 pm, 8th January 2019

I thank noble Lords for their contributions to this debate. I shall begin by looking at what I think is an area of common ground: we all recognise the importance of the financial services industry to the UK. Perhaps I may pick up on a point made by my noble friend Lord Flight, that one of the main purposes of this Bill is to ensure that the UK remains an attractive and competitive place to do business, retaining our place as a world leader in financial services. To do this in a no-deal context, it is essential that the UK retains sovereignty over our rules. From the perspective of financial stability and protecting the UK taxpayer, it is essential that the Government, the Bank of England and the FCA have the tools available to ensure that the UK markets are appropriately and effectively regulated.

It would be wrong to set a condition over the UK’s regulatory framework that means decisions which are made about the UK’s future regime are determined through the lens of maintaining equivalence to the EU, irrespective of the quality of those rules and how future legislation and the market itself may evolve.