The UK has held onto its position as Europe’s most attractive location for international investment into financial services despite a drop in the number of projects during the pandemic.
Consultancy EY’s latest UK Attractiveness Survey for Financial Services, found the UK attracted foreign investment for 56 projects in 2020.
This was the highest in Europe but 43 projects lower than in 2019, and the largest year-on-year fall in a decade
France was in second place with 49 financial services projects backed during the year.
The UK came out as the European country with the most investment friendly Covid-19 recovery plans, backed by 48 per cent of respondents and the most attractive for financial services investment where it scored 50 per cent, according to the research.
Germany was second on both metrics with 38 per cent and 33 per cent respectively, while France and Switzerland came in joint third with 21 per cent each.
At a city level, London continues to be seen as Europe’s most attractive destination for financial services investment, backed by 44 per cent of respondents, followed by Stockholm (19 per cent) and Amsterdam (17 per cent).
The US was the main source of financial services investment into the UK, accounting for 37 per cent in 2020, up from 32 per cent in 2019.
“While its lead may have narrowed in 2020, most likely only short-term in response to pandemic-related business disruption and Brexit, investor sentiment suggests that the UK is looking to a strong future, and will continue to outperform the rest of Europe in attracting post-Covid-19 financial services investment,” Anna Anthony, UK financial services managing partner at EY, said.
“Investors have consistently been drawn to the strength and resilience of the City, its deep capital markets, gold-plated regulatory system and for the innovation and talent it offers.
“Despite the challenges of the past few years, the evidence points to this not only continuing, but growing in strength, ensuring the UK remains a world leading financial services centre.”
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