World Bank says UK is ‘better for business than Germany AND France’ as EU nations fail

This post was originally published on this site

A study by the World Bank found just one EU nation ranked higher than Britain, which held firm in seventh place a year on from the nation’s decision to leave.

Denmark, the EU’s top ranking member state and one of the few bloc controlled states not to be tied to the failing Euro, came in at third place.

Meanwhile, the bloc’s economic powerhouses of Germany and France languished behind the UK in 20th and 31st respectively.

Acting director of the global indicators group at the World Bank Rita Ramalho claimed the ease with which a business could be set up in Britain was behind the ranking.

BrexitGETTY

The bloc’s economic powerhouses of Germany and France languished behind the UK in 20th and 31st

She said: “The UK is a good place to do business because it is simple and very affordable to start a new business.

“The tax burden on small and medium size businesses is low and easy to comply with, the process of importing and exporting is straightforward, and commercial courts are very efficient.”

It comes as it is revealed the Bank of England believes 75,000 jobs will be lost in the City after the UK leaves the EU, despite both HSBC and UBS predicting minimal changes.

A senior figure at the Bank of England has reportedly told the BBC that the Bank thinks 75,000 is a ‘reasonable estimate’ of job losses in the UK financial sector after Brexit, particularly if Britain fails to broker a decent exit deal.

This contradicts comments made by Deputy BoE Governor Sam Woods earlier this month, who told news agency Reuters that 10,000 jobs was a ‘reasonable’ estimate of the number of workers that might be moved to Europe after March 2019.

With the predictions of job losses in the City of London – Europe’s largest financial centre – ranging from 220,000 to zero, it seems the BoE has fallen somewhere in the middle.

The 75,000 scenario is in line with management consultancy Oliver Wyman, which last year published a report estimating this number of job losses in a hard Brexit scenario.

Other predictions include 30,000 job losses, estimated by the Brussels-based Bruegel research group in February.

Theresa MayGETTY

A study by the World Bank found just one EU nation ranked higher than Britain

The wild variation in predictions has led to accusations of scare mongering, as EU advocates attempt to paint a bleak economic picture for the UK post-Brexit.

However, in the last week multi-national banks HSBC and UBS have both said that in-fact, they each expect less than 1,000 jobs to go.

“It may be less than 1,000 employees, but it’s up to 1,000,” HSBC’s finance director Iain Mackay told reporters on Monday.

City of LondonGETTY

The Bank of England believes 75,000 jobs will be lost in the City after the UK leaves the EU

He added that the bank had so far incurred $12million (£9.1million) in costs in relation to Brexit, mostly spent on legal advice regarding contingency planning, and expects to spend $200 to $300 million on relocation costs.

HSBC has echoed a statement from boss of Swiss bank UBS Sergio Ermotti, who last week said that increased “regulatory and political clarifications” were making it “more and more unlikely” that the bank would move up to 1,000 jobs to Europe as originally threatened.

Speaking to reporters following the publication of the bank’s latest results on Friday, Ermotti said that UBS would finalise its Brexit plans “in the next few weeks”.