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Barclays chairman John McFarlane: London risks losing its status as a global financial centre 

November 11, 2015

Lauren Fedore, City A.M.

The City risks losing its status as the world’s leading financial centre, Barclays chairman John McFarlane will warn in a speech tonight.

Speaking at TheCityUK’s annual dinner at Mansion House, McFarlane will say that Britain’s attractiveness as a financial centre is reaching a “tipping point” due to disadvantages in taxation, levies, regulation and infrastructure.

“London is the world’s leading financial centre and TheCityUK’s priority is to keep it that way,” McFarlane, who is also chairman of TheCityUK, will say, adding, “We need to advance our strengths and eliminate disadvantages. Staying the same simply will not cut it.

“The economic balance of power is heading east and the technological revolution means business must strive harder to compete. It needs the support of government to win.”

McFarlane will also call for the government and regulators to launch a review of the unintended consequences of existing regulation, saying that sector-specific levies and surcharges such as the bank levy and new corporation tax surcharge “may have negative implications over the longer-term that we risk realising only when it is too late”.

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