Over 5,000 firms reliant on financial EU passport
The threat to Britain's financial services sector has been laid bare after it was disclosed that more than 5,000 companies rely on "passporting rights" to do business in Europe.
The head of an influential select committee warned of significant risks were they to lose them as a result of Brexit.
In a letter to the Treasury Committee, the head of the UK's financial watchdog, Andrew Bailey, said that 5,476 UK firms held a total of 336,421 passports that provide access to the European Union's single market in financial services.
Meanwhile, 8,008 European businesses are currently using a total of 23,532 passports to provide financial services in the UK.
Treasury Select Committee chairman Andrew Tyrie said: "These figures give us an initial idea of the effects of losing full access to the single market in financial services. The business put at risk could be significant.
"None of the current off-the-shelf arrangements can preserve existing passporting arrangements while giving the UK the influence and control it needs."