POST-BREXIT, SAME COMMITMENT
Thursday 04 February 2021
One month after the Brexit deal, UniCredit continues to help its clients navigate the new landscape and confirms its commitment to UK and EU clients alike.
On 31 December 2020, the Brexit standstill transition period ended and the UK left the EU single market and Customs Union. The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement was provisionally applied from 1 January 2021 pending ratification by the European Parliament. The Agreement reduces uncertainty for businesses after months of protracted negotiations.
Last week, we held a webinar on what the Agreement means. It forms part of a long series of client events we have organised on Brexit over the past five years to keep our clients informed of the latest developments and the implications for cross-border trade, business, sectors and the wider economy.
In the webinar, Daniel Vernazza, our Chief International Economist, discussed the economic outlook for the global and UK economy, and explained the UK-EU Agreement and its implications for sterling. The event was attended by more than 120 clients, mostly from EU- and UK-based corporates.
“The Agreement is broadly in line with our prior expectations. It ensures no tariffs or quotas on cross-border trade in all industrial and agricultural goods - subject to rules of origin requirements, as well as cooperation in several other areas, including energy, the “level playing field”, social security, transport and dispute settlement. There is little coverage of services and minimal coverage of financial services: the Agreement does not provide broad-based market access rights, instead emphasising the prudential “carve out” to protect financial stability. “Passporting” for financial services firms ended on 31 December 2020 when the transition period expired.”
Our UK teams have constantly monitored and will keep monitoring the political and regulatory developments in order to be fully prepared for all eventualities and to ensure continuity of business. With a Corporate & Investment Banking (CIB) Division operating from hubs in Milan, Munich, Vienna and London, we can continue to do business with our clients with a very limited and manageable impact on our operations.
“We remain committed to serving our clients’ UK operations, as well as providing a portal to Europe for UK clients. By strengthening our coverage teams, we can provide a first-class service multinational corporates and financial institutions in the UK and are prepared for the transition post-Brexit. We will also keep working alongside the Group’s other key hubs.”