The Mayor of London has called for more autonomy in the wake of the EU referendum.
London was the sole region in England that voted to Remain and its fate and fortunes are allied strongly to the EU and the international community in general.
A petition calling for London to declare independence has gathered 175,175 signatures since Friday.
In a speech on Tuesday Sadiq Khan said: “As much as I might like the idea of a London city state, I’m not seriously talking about independence.
“But on behalf of all Londoners, I am demanding more autonomy for the capital – right now. More autonomy to protect London’s economy from the uncertainty ahead, to protect the businesses from around the world who trade here and to protect our jobs, wealth and prosperity.”
Taking a theme of the Leave campaign he said he wanted “more control” over budgets and policy ”because when London succeeds, the rest of the country succeeds too. And when we fail, the entire nation fails.”
Speaking at The Times CEO Summit, Mr Khan urged the Government to “move fast” on devolution, and said: “We can’t hang around for the outcome of the negotiations before we give Londoners more control.”
He mentioned the strong support for devolution from the Chancellor George Osborne and prospective Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who established the London Finance Commission report into devolution for London as Mayor.
It is understood that Mayor is looking for the devolution of fiscal responsibility including tax raising powers, as well as more control over business and skills, housing and planning, transport, health and policing and criminal justice.
Hackney Mayor Jules Pipe, chairman of London Councils, said: “London Government is speaking with one voice on this issue. We need more power over our own destiny to help cope with the fallout of leaving the EU.”
Baroness Jo Valentine, CEO of London First, said: “The Mayor is right that we must remain part of the single market. London businesses are absolutely clear this is critical to protecting jobs and prosperity.”
Prof Tony Travers from the London School of Economics, said: “There should be no political block to making devolution to London happen fast. This is a rare opportunity to reshape our constitution to ensure London has the powers it needs to allow people more direct access to those who make decisions about their city. Whitehall is remote even to Londoners. The lesson of last week’s vote is that people want to be listened to.”