Canary Wharf may lose two EU organisations as they ponder whether to leave the country over Brexit.
According to The Observer , talks over the relocation of the European Banking Authority (EBA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) are expected to begin within two weeks, with cities including Frankfurt, Milan and Paris vying for the opportunity to take the institutions.
It is reported EU diplomats agreed to strip Canary Wharf of both organisations as well as formally reject the Prime Minister’s calls for early trade talks at a meeting on Tuesday, April 11.
The decision comes after Theresa May began the process of leaving the EU by triggering Article 50 of the Lisbon treaty in March.
The EBA, based at One Canada Square, coordinates EU banking rules while the EMA, based at Churchill Place, is responsible for monitoring the safety of drugs across Europe.
Together the institutions employ around 1,000 members of staff in London.
A senior diplomat told The Observer the EU was fast losing sympathy with Britain, saying: “Britain used to be pragmatic.
“That doesn’t seem to be the case any more, and we need to protect our interests.”
However, a spokeswoman for the Department For Exiting The European Union said: “No decisions have been taken about the location of the EBA or the EMA. These will be subject to the exit negotiations.
“As part of these negotiations, the Government will discuss with the EU and member states how best to continue cooperation in the fields of banking and medicines regulation in the best interests of both the UK and the EU.
“It would not be appropriate to prejudge the outcome of the negotiations.”
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