On Friday, the head of the central bank of France said that Paris is set to become a European financial markets hub as international banks consider the French capital as a base to some activities after the departure of the United Kindom from the European Union in March 2019.
Francois Villeroy de Galhau, the Governor of the Bank of France, said that even though Brexit was considered to be bad news for Europe and the United Kingdom, it presented a “historic opportunity” to restructure the financial system of Europe.
He said that in the future, there would not be a dominant financial centre as London is now. However, the would still be an integrated network with centres that are specialised in various activities.
During a financial markets conference that was held at the central bank, he stated: “In this respect, Paris has a lot of assets to become a major centre for corporate finance and innovation in Europe.”
He added: “We have a lot of favourable indications that big international banks will set up their market activities mainly in Paris.”
Paris is already considered to be one of the largest centres for asset management, private equity, and corporate bond issuance in Europe after London.
Villeroy said that the Bank of France aims to become “the markets’ central bank in Europe” and was backing some initiatives to develop the market infrastructure of Europe for collateral, securities lending, and commercial paper.
Meanwhile, Emmanuel Macron, the President of France, who himself is a former investment banker, has taken some steps to draw in finance jobs from London.
In addition to the easing labour regulations that came months after Macron assumed office last year, France has introduced a flat 30 percent tax on capital income, scrapped the highest payroll tax for banks, and decreased the wealth tax to cover only the real estate assets.