LONDON — Chancellor Philip Hammond will say on Wednesday that the UK needs to strengthen its fintech sector in the wake of Brexit to help achieve the government’s ambition for a “global Britain.”
Hammond is set to keynote the Treasury’s first International Fintech conference on Wednesday, alongside Bank of England Governor Mark Carney.
The Chancellor will say: “We will have to strive and graft and fight to seize the opportunities – and make the most of them. That means growing and strengthening the areas — like fintech — in which we enjoy a competitive advantage.”
The International Fintech conference is part of fintech week and earlier this week Deloitte declared that London is the number one hub for fintech globally, alongside Singapore.
The Chancellor will say: “While we need to continue to attract the brightest and the best from around the world to these shores, we must also do better at nurturing and developing the home-grown talent to drive our economy forward in the future.
“Our vision of an outward-looking, Global Britain will deliver the high-skilled, high-wage economy of the future that will power the higher living standards we all want to see for future generations.”
Wednesday’s conference, held in central London, aims to drum up investment and expansion in the fintech sector. Representatives of over 100 businesses will attend alongside a similar numbers of investors.
The Treasury said ahead of the event that the UK’s fintech sector — which includes everything from online lending to applying blockchain to capital markets — is now worth £7 billion to the UK economy and employs 60,000 people.
Notable British fintech businesses include peer-to-peer lender Funding Circle and online international money transfer business TransferWise, both valued at over $US1 billion. The CEOs of both will be speaking at Wednesday’s conference.
However, Hammond will warn in Wednesday’s speech that Britain cannot rest on its laurels. He will say: “We can’t remain the number one place for FinTech and the other technologies of the fourth industrial revolution by simply relying on our ingenuity, talent and openness, we have to go out and get the business.”
HSBC chairman Douglas Flint, London Stock Exchange CEO Xavier Rolet, and International Trade Minister Liam Fox are all also set to speak at Wednesday’s conference.
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