French President Emmanuel Macron has began a new push to bring City of London firms to Paris post-Brexit.
JP Morgan chief Jamie Dimon and Goldman Sachs boss David Solomon have been invited to Macron’s “Choose France” event at the Palace of Versailles on 28 June, where the President will try to make the case for investment in France.
The Sunday Telegraph reports that Macron will highlight the UK’s strict Covid travel policy in his push to get financial services firms to move jobs and assets to Paris from London.
Major players in the City of London are reportedly angry at the government’s insistence on not allowing people who have had two jabs to travel to amber list countries without quarantining on their return to the UK.
One investment banking source told the Telegraph: “We have to run a business and we do need people to go between London and New York. The French are opening their country for business. We don’t want to be an exception. We are not trying to be selfish, we are saying all business needs this.”
Boris Johnson and Joe Biden agreed last week at the G7 summit in Cornwall to create a new taskforce with a goal to open up travel between the UK and the US.
However, there is no timeframe for a deal on travel access to be agreed.
Meanwhile, people who have been fully vaccinated can travel from France and other EU nations to the US without having to take tests or quarantine.
Macron’s push to lure City firms to Paris is a part of a longer term goal to try and benefit from the UK’s exit from the EU.
Macron last year publicly declared his intention to turn Paris into the “leading financial centre” in Europe.
The UK’s financial services sector lost its wide ranging pre-Brexit access to EU markets on 1 January this year.
The vast majority of City firms were prepared for this and have moved jobs to EU capitals to retain frictionless access to European markets.
Around 7,000 jobs and more than £1 trillion of assets from financial services firms have been switched from London to EU capitals since 2016, according to EY.