Govt pledges support for UK fintech

Govt pledges support for UK fintech

The economic secretary to the Treasury has said the UK would be missing a trick if it did not support the fintech industry and firms in this space.

Speaking at City & Financial Global’s City Week 2021: Financing A Sustainable Global Recovery conference today (June 21), MP John Glen discussed the government’s vision for the future and said the Treasury had plans to support a more technologically advanced financial services industry. 

He explained that last year it had commissioned a fintech strategic review and was taking forward a number of actions that were recommended in the review.

“These include help for fintech firms to recruit the best talent for our new scale up visas scheme or regulatory scale walks that will enhance support for early stage fintech firms and help for UK fintech firms to launch overseas," he said.

“This is another key element of our vision for the future of financial services, and that’s because as a country with a globally leading fintech industry, we will be missing a trick, if we fail to build on our strengths in this area.”

However, he added the Treasury’s “technical ambitions” were not limited to startups. 

“We want to make the UK even more welcoming for the biggest, fastest growing firms. That means making it easier to list on the stock market, which is why the government has made commitments in relation to each of the recommendations in law drawn from Hill's excellent recent listings [review].”

Elsewhere, he outlined the UK’s regulatory plans for the future and said the passing of the Financial Services Act in April aimed to support competitiveness in the sector.

“We're building on this work for our future regulatory framework review, which is evaluating our regulatory objectives, the role of the regulator, and the approach to retain EU law. 

“I know that many of you have responded to that first consultation, I think we received 120 responses. My team and I are looking carefully and in depth at those contributions, ahead of a second iteration, a second consultation on that very important framework later this year.” 

While many recognise that regulation has to be efficient and has to comply with international standards, questions during the conference were raised around how to make it less onerous and more flexible.

Glen was asked how influential the industry, which has to “bear the cost” of the regulation and implement these rules, will really be on the rules that come in to place.

“Well they bear the cost but they also can take advantage of the opportunity,” he responded. 

“I'm always trying to be positive about what we face here and what we have is numerous consultations with industry that are alive at the moment from solvency to looking at how we implement some of those things I said on listings and fintech, looking at the wholesale markets review, and scoping out some work there that will have a massive impact.