At least €150bn of assets have been decamped from the City to France ahead of Brexit, according to the governor of the Banque de France.
As trade talks with Brussels enter a critical week, ahead of a highly anticipated meeting of European leaders on Thursday and Friday, François Villeroy de Galhau told the Europlace International Financial Forum that since September, the bank had authorised 21 investment firms, four credit institutions and seven third-country branches to “ensure continuity of activities in France”.
In addition, 31 entities – mainly investment firms – had applied for a licence in France, he said.
Encouraging more firms to follow their lead, Mr de Galhau said: “Even if there is a trade deal, which I still wish and hope, Britain will have left the single market and things will change anyway significantly for financial services.
“It means that firms operating under the European passport must quickly finalise their relocation to the EU if they want to operate here as of next year.”
This month, EY said more than 7,500 jobs had been uprooted to the Continent since the Brexit referendum, with at least 24 financial services firms publicly recording more than £1.2 trillion of asset transfers.
Dublin, Luxembourg, Frankfurt and Paris were firms' favourite destinations for relocation, EY said.
On Tuesday, the Lords’ EU Services subcommittee will publish a report on the effect of Brexit on professional and business services.
It is expected to recommend ways the Government can support these industries at the end of the transition period, such as by providing data adequacy and equivalence.