Bank Services: Companies

Treasury written question – answered on 25 May 2023.

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Photo of Lord Hannan of Kingsclere Lord Hannan of Kingsclere Conservative

To ask His Majesty's Government whether they have made any assessment of the impact of regulation on the ease with which companies can open bank accounts; and whether there is a detrimental impact on investment.

Photo of Baroness Penn Baroness Penn The Parliamentary Secretary, HM Treasury

Access to banking facilities is important for the economy. The provision of banking services is a commercial decision for firms based on a variety of factors, including the local law, regulation of individual countries, an assessment of profitability, or other commercial drivers.

The Government regularly engages with industry to understand the impacts of regulation on businesses’ ability to access banking services. That is why, for example, in last year’s review of the Money Laundering Regulations, the Government committed to consult on options aiming to address the difficulties for businesses in accessing Pooled Client Accounts, including broadening the range of low-risk circumstances in which these accounts may be provided without checks being required on the clients whose funds are held in the account. As committed to in the second Economic Crime Plan, this consultation on changes to the Money Laundering Regulations will begin by the end of this year.

I would encourage businesses seeking a bank account to explore the Business Current Account (BCA) finder tool developed by UK Finance, designed to help businesses compare the full range of bank accounts available and find products that best suit their needs

My officials will continue to engage with industry to understand any emerging issues and assess any impact on investment as a result.

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