Dublin judged best post-Brexit EU hub for banks

Dublin is the most favourable alternative European Union (EU) location to London for banks seeking to relocate operations from the UK capital in the wake of Brexit, a study suggests.

The Irish city heads an index of 15 cities assessed by online relocation platform Movinga, which included factors such as the number of Michelin-starred restaurants and Burberry outlets in addition to accommodation costs.

Second ranking in the index was awarded to Amsterdam, followed by Malta’s capital of Valetta, Luxembourg, and Brussels. Frankfurt, which the Financial Times recently reported as a front runner in attracting London-based banking operations, was in sixth place and Paris was ranked ninth.

Although Ireland tied for the highest top income tax rate, at 52%, it benefits from being the EU’s only other English-speaking destination in the EU and the cost of renting an apartment in Dublin is markedly cheaper than in Paris, Frankfurt or Luxembourg, Movinga reported. At the bottom of the list was Milan, judged least desirable alternative location due to factors ranging from expensive rents to low English comprehension.

Banks will begin the process of transferring jobs from the UK soon after prime minister Theresa May starts the clock ticking on the two-year negotiation period to leave the EU, expected on March 29.

Dublin is emerging as a popular option for London-based banks seeking uninterrupted access to the bloc post-Brexit, with Standard Chartered, Barclays and Bank of America expected to choose the city for their new EU hubs. However, major international banks such as Goldman Sachs and Citigroup are believed to favour Frankfurt.

“Everyone is talking about cities like Paris and Frankfurt preparing for an influx of banking industry workers due to Brexit,” said Finn Hänsel, a managing director of Movinga. “But other cities like Dublin, Valletta, Luxembourg and Amsterdam may actually be better equipped to make these workers feel happy and at home.

“Individuals and businesses alike should consider the unique factors important to their relocation before planning their move.”

Movinga’s study also found that employees at start-up financial institutions, whose requirements are different to those of bankers, would be happiest in Berlin due to the widespread use of English, the number of co-working spaces, access to capital and lower average shared rent and monthly travel costs. Warsaw and Budapest followed in second and third place respectively.



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