Podium: London's Place in the Financial Firmament ; from a Speech by the Lord Mayor of London to City University's Department of Shipping, Trade and Finance
Martin, Clive, The Independent (London, England)
ONE OF the roles of a lord mayor is to be the principal ambassador for the UK-based financial services industry that is centered on the City of London. This includes not only the British businesses but also the overseas firms that are based here.
I have an extensive overseas visit programme, and this year the emphasis is on the 13 accession countries to the European Union. I hope over the course of the year to visit them all. I might add that I am also going to southern Europe, the Gulf, east Asia, South Africa and North America! A total of 28 countries in all.
You should not underestimate the huge task that the accession countries have in converting their economies and institutions from a communist style to that of a Western democracy. The accession document alone runs to 80,000 pages. It was 12,000 when the UK joined.
Some countries are more advanced than others - I went to Estonia and Slovenia recently, and they are well ahead. But even they need an immense amount of help from the European Commission, governments, and, in our case, the City and British industry and commerce.
Today's single market allows all countries of the EU to regard the whole of European economic area as their domestic market. And as these 13 countries gradually accede to the EU this market is going to expand significantly, in all sectors.
I would like to conclude with a brief word about the City and the euro. And here I am not talking about the political aspects, which are for the government. I am talking about the trading of the currency and the various financial instruments associated with it.
City firms and financial markets certainly achieved an orderly and smooth start in the trading of the currency. This situation has continued with the euro becoming the next most traded international currency after the dollar. The City of London has fully maintained its market share, and even increased it in some sectors. Whilst the UK may be "out", the …
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Publication information: Article title: Podium: London's Place in the Financial Firmament ; from a Speech by the Lord Mayor of London to City University's Department of Shipping, Trade and Finance. Contributors: Martin, Clive - Author. Newspaper title: The Independent (London, England). Publication date: April 1, 2000. Page number: 4. © 2009 The Independent - London. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All Rights Reserved.
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