The events in the UK continue to dominate the news as Theresa
May becomes the new UK PM. What does this mean for Jersey? The
straight answer is we don't know yet.
On the one hand her social justice emphasis and talk of an
industrial strategy hinting at interventionism, provides a warning
shot over the bows of big business. This will worry free marketeers
as will her lack of a business background.
On the other hand her long track record of pragmatic and careful
political management indicates she's not a radical or an
idealogue and can be reasoned with. One positive development is
that her campaign manager was Chris Grayling who has been to Jersey
and made some very positive comments about our stance as an
International Finance Centre. He will likely pick up a key
role in the new administration.
There are more clues in May's background; a former Bank of
England public servant, who worked for the association of payments
and clearing services, and is married to an Investment banker. She
should understand how the City and cross border finance works.
Her recently published tax returns were in fact statements
provided by Coutts, so she clearly appreciates the value of sound
financial advice, good administration and tax planning.
Is Theresa May the new Margaret Thatcher?
I think not. She has much more in common with Mrs Merkel; a
commitment to social justice, a pragmatist, wary of mistakes and
big bets. Merkel and May would have worked well together in the EU,
but now they must build a bi lateral working relationship as
leaders of the 4th and 5th largest global economies.
So what will happen next?
My guess is the triggering of article 50 will be delayed till
post summer and the UK civil service will work with the new Cabinet
to thrash out their Brexit negotiating position as an immediate
We are likely to know more in September but we will be
monitoring carefully for any further developments affecting Jersey
and will issue further updates.
On 16 March 2017, the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017 gave the Prime Minister the power to trigger the Brexit process by giving notice under Article 50(2) of the UK's intention to leave the EU.
With the dawning of a new age, that of the separation of the UK from the EU and all that it entails, British businesses that depend on the European market must find ways of maintaining a foothold in Europe.
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