Brexit Bulletin, 18 February 2019

Feb 18, 2019

“No news is not always good news”. These were the words of European Council President Donald Tusk last week indicating that there is not much in the way of progress to report on EU/UK negotiations.  However the UK Prime Minister this week plans to meet with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and speak to the leaders of the EU27 in attempt to move forward. 

What’s next?

UK Prime Minister Theresa May will this week go to Brussels to meet with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker seeking changes to the Irish backstop.   It’s been reported that Mrs May will also tell the leaders of the EU27 that she could pass her Brexit deal if there were some concessions granted by the EU on the backstop.

The Irish backstop, the guarantee that there will be no hard border on the island of Ireland, remains a sticking point in the negotiations.   Some in the UK are concerned that the UK might be stuck indefinitely in the backstop.  The Prime Minister has written to her party MPs asking them to put aside their “personal preferences” and back the deal which she says is in the interests of the country. 

The EU has said all along that the backstop is not up for renegotiation.  An interesting week of negotiations ahead.

UK clearing houses given a boost

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the financial markets regulator will allow three UK based derivatives clearing houses (LCH Limited, ICE Clear Europe Limited and LME Clear Limited) permission to continue to serve EU clients in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  This is reported as a large boost to London who at the moment is the leader in Euro clearing. Read the statement from ESMA.