International outcomes and activity

We have continued to deliver on our ambitious international strategy, securing key outcomes for members, including influencing government policy and minimising the impact on trade from the growing number of data localisation regimes.

An update on our recent international work

Progressed our ‘International Strategy’ into its second year. Our focus has been on delivering further progress on the goal of making the UK the leading international financial centre by 2026, through both short-term wins and longer-term solutions. There have been significant headwinds from the Ukraine war, the continuing rise of economic protectionism globally, growing tensions between China and the US, and domestic political instability which have acted as a dampener on investment. Despite these challenges, some strong progress has been made in several key areas.

Influenced government policy on mobility, with the UK government accepting our recommendations on the need to improve short-term business mobility and announcing changes to the business visitor definitions of permitted activity. This has been a key issue for international companies operating in the UK and will improve the UK’s attractiveness for investment. Further work is underway to inform the implementation and press for further reforms.

Positioned the UK as a thought leader on global issues through our second International Conference, sponsored by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, HSBC and State Street. The event attracted around 300 delegates, including international delegations from the World Alliance of International Financial Centres (WAIFC), India, Singapore and Japan. Keynote speakers included our Board Chair Anne Richards DBE; HSBC UK Bank Plc CEO Ian Stuart; Minister for Investment Lord Johnson of Lainston CBE; and Shadow Secretary for International Trade Nick Thomas-Symonds MP. The panels sessions covered trade and investment trends, the transition to net zero, and the industry’s role in supporting global innovation and the event attracted widespread media coverage.

"TheCityUK enables introductions with key stakeholders in trade bodies and regions around
the world where the UK can benefit from doing business."

TheCityUK member

Developed the UK as a global hub for innovation through our work on FinTech linkages and data localisation. We partnered on a FinTech Innovation workshop with the UK Swiss Trade Envoy, Innovate Finance, Innovate UK and our Swiss partners economiesuisse, Innosuisse and the Swiss Fintech Association to create new research collaborations across key industries under the UK-Swiss Science Agreement with the grant call receiving over 100 applications. We worked with HMT, the UK High Commission, the FCA, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Enterprise Singapore to introduce Singapore FinTechs to our members under the UK-Singapore FinTech Bridge, and discussed how the Bridge can support greater two-way trade and investment flows. Through the India-UK Financial Partnership (UKIFP) we outlined a range of practical recommendations to link our two FinTech ecosystems in our ‘Harnessing the power of FinTech and data’ report presented to both governments. We also worked with the Nigeria Central Bank, EnterpriseNGR, the Nigerian FinTech Association, the UK Government and members to develop a roadmap for the implementation of their FinTech ecosystem, and worked with the Central Bank of Azerbaijan on their transition to a digital finance ecosystem.

Worked across multiple markets to minimise the impact on trade from the growing number of data localisation regimes, especially in markets such as the EU, India, Indonesia and the UAE – particularly key given 85% of exports in our industry are digitally delivered. Working closely with members, we set out how data is moved between jurisdictions, why and what happens to it as well as the implications of increased data localisation on anti-money laundering, cybersecurity and financial inclusion. We also submitted recommendations to international and local consultations, together with the IRSG Data Committee.

"I am continually impressed by the quality of the conferences - both in content and speakers and organisation."

TheCityUK member

Helped members navigate the increasingly volatile and uncertain global operating environment through our speaker series on geopolitical risk, hosting leading diplomats such as Jane Hartley, the US Ambassador to the UK, and providing debriefs for members from our visits and meetings on geopolitical trends, trade, economic security, and the role that government and business can play in achieving net zero.