The U.K. Conservative Party is taking London for granted in
its approach to leaving the European Union, according to
Liberal Democrats Treasury Lead, Baroness Susan
The accusation from Kramer came in an interview with
Institutional Investor as both parties enter their second week
of campaigning for the U.K. general election, scheduled for
June 8. The former Citigroup banker has been leading the Lib
Dems campaign to secure better terms for the City of
London in the ongoing Brexit negotiations.
Kramer criticized Tory policymakers for not adequately
considering the impact that fund managers would suffer from
losing passporting rights to the E.U. and said the
government had given insufficient thought to the implications
Brexit would have on U.K. clearing house operations.
Passporting permits U.K. firms to offer their investment funds
and services in Continental Europe through a reciprocal
Does the current Tory government take the City for
granted? I would say absolutely, Kramer said.
Everybody is worried about the ability to access E.U. and
the government is underestimating the complexity of
When the U.K. leaves the E.U. in 2019, British fund firms
may lose the right to distribute their funds in the European
The City is very concerned to lose [euro-denominated]
derivatives clearing from the U.K. and quite a number of
British entities will be harmed by the loss of
passporting, Kramer said. I hope, very much, that
the City is now more willing to listen to the Lib
The Liberal Democrats were in power between 2010 and 2015,
forming a coalition government with the Tories, as the
Conservative Party is known, after securing 57 seats and 23
percent of the popular vote. They lost 49 of those seats in the
2015 election, wiping out gains made by the party over the
previous two decades.
Kramer is hopeful that her career in banking and her role on
various parliamentary finance and business committees between
2011 and 2013 will add weight to the message that the party is
trying to get out to voters: the Lib Dems offer an alternative
to the Conservatives tough approach to Brexit.
According to Kramer, Liberal Democrats are campaigning to
protect the U.K.s fintech sector from any unnecessary
shocks from a Hard Brexit, specifically the rights
of E.U. nationals to remain in the country and to protect
rights afforded to fintechs under the Electronic Commerce Directive.
The Tories, led by British Prime Minister Theresa May,
expect Brexit negotiations will be difficult.
The only way to secure the best deal in what will be
very tough negotiations is through the strong and stable
leadership of Theresa May protecting Britains
interests, a Conservative Party spokesman said.
Unless you vote for Theresa May and her Conservative
candidates on 8 June, the weak, floundering and nonsensical
Jeremy Corbyn will be leading our negotiations instead, propped
up by the Liberal Democrats.
Corbyn is the Labour Partys candidate for prime
Corbyn has already made his contempt for the financial
services industry clear, describing it as an extractive
industry, showing he puts little value on the
sectors important contribution to our economy, the
Conservative Party spokesman said.
Kramer remains focused on the importance of passporting,
noting that in relatively new fintech world firms
in the U.K. are quite shocked by Brexit as
theyve always been European. About one-third of the
founders and the chief financial officers of U.K.-based fintech
firms are from Continental Europe, she said.
As Britain is leaving the E.U., they are going to have
to build their fintech business within the E.U., Kramer
said. If you are a U.K.-based fintech that has got to be
scary to read.