Switzerland and United Kingdom deepen relationship in financial sector

Bern, 27.01.2021 - At a virtual meeting on 27 January 2021, the finance ministers of Switzerland and the United Kingdom (UK) agreed the next steps for negotiations on a mutual recognition agreement in the financial sector. In addition, Federal Councillor Ueli Maurer and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak agreed on a normalisation in the area of stock exchange equivalence from 3 February 2021.

In June 2020, finance ministers Ueli Maurer and Rishi Sunak had already issued a joint statement expressing their intention to conclude a financial services agreement between the two countries. This should enable cross-border market access for a wide range of financial services in the areas of insurance, banking, asset management and capital market infrastructure.

At the virtual meeting via videoconference on 27 January 2021, the two ministers gave a positive assessment of the exploratory talks held so far. They agreed on the further steps for concrete negotiations on the individual topics in the coming months. The agreement sought by Switzerland and the UK is to be based on the principle of mutual recognition of the applicable financial market regulation and the relevant supervisory framework.

In addition, Ueli Maurer and Rishi Sunak exchanged views on the UK's recognition of Swiss stock exchanges under the share trading obligation and the associated measure to protect Swiss stock exchange infrastructure, which is still in place. Both ministers confirmed that progress has been made to normalise Swiss-UK relations for stock exchanges. The corresponding regulation granting equivalence to Switzerland's stock exchanges is being considered by the UK Parliament and is expected to be approved and come into force on 3 February 2021. Immediately thereafter, the measures taken by Switzerland to protect the Swiss stock exchange infrastructure will cease to apply to the UK.

With a financial services agreement, Switzerland and the UK want to reaffirm their commitment to the importance of open financial markets and international financial stability, as well as consolidate their position as the world's leading international financial centres in Europe. Both sides are committed to protecting investors and consumers, as well as maintaining market integrity and financial stability, while adhering to the highest regulatory standards.

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Peter Minder, Head of FDF Communications
+41 58 462 63 01, peter.minder@gs-efd.admin.ch


Federal Department of Finance