Barclays to move £166bn worth of assets to Dublin ahead of Brexit

Barclays has been given the all clear to transfer £166bn of assets to its Irish subsidiary as the bank “cannot wait any longer” to implement its no-deal Brexit strategy amid ongoing political uncertainty.

A High Court judgement has revealed that the lender is proceeding with its plan to transfer all of its European branches into the ownership of Barclays Bank Ireland (BBI) as we approach the official Brexit date, 29 March.

According to Mr Justice Snowden’s judgement, the scale of the transfer was “huge” and involved clients across Barclays’ private banking, corporate banking and investment banking business.

The judgement added: “Due to the continuing uncertainty over whether there might be a no-deal Brexit, the Barclays Group has determined that it cannot wait any longer to implement the scheme.

“In light of the large volume of business to be transferred, the scheme contains a number of phased dates upon which the transfer of the different types of business, and the business of the branches in Spain, Italy and France, will become effective.

“The overriding requirement, however, is that BII must be legally and operationally ready to conduct all relevant regulated business… by no later than 29 March 2019, which is the date currently set for Brexit.”

According to the bank, as a result of the transfer, between 150 and 200 jobs will be created in Dublin, which will be a combination of new jobs created and those moving from the UK.

Barclays is just one of many financial services firms known to be in the advanced stages of implementing a Brexit contingency plan, many of which were triggered towards the end of last year as it became clear that MPs were not going to agree on Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal.

According to research from EY, 20 financial services firms have announced that they are transferring assets out of London to centres across the EU, amounting to almost £800bn, allowing them to serve EU-focused clients regardless of the outcome of Brexit negotiations.

Yesterday the City of London Corporation warned that UK firms would move more of their business to the EU if the government was unable to find a solution to the ongoing Brexit stalemate.

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