In January, London lost its claim as Europe’s largest share trading centre to Amsterdam. However, the City of London still oversees almost half of the world’s currency trading. Post-Brexit digital currency pioneers and financial experts are now urging the UK to embrace bitcoin and become the world’s first hub for cryptocurrency trading and mining.
Now that the City of London is free from EU regulations it needs to find new ways to thrive outside of the EU.
Speaking to Express.co.uk bitcoin pioneer Max Keiser said: “Me and George Galloway had many meetings with ministers in Westminster going back ten years trying to get them educated about bitcoin as a reserve asset.
“That was when Bitcoin was under $10 (£7.19).
“Now at $48,000 (£34,500), and with the City on the ropes, thanks to Brexit, an outcome I warned about, they are finally, in desperation, coming around to bitcoin.
“My guess is that, even though they should immediately start hoarding and mining bitcoin for the sake of the country they won’t because they’ll never give up the old boys club of insider dealing and market manipulation that has kept the same group in power for many decades.”
On Monday finance expert Professor David McMillan, speaking to The Conversation, urged the UK to take full advantage of “no longer having to coordinate and agree with 27 EU countries to corner emerging areas such as green investment and fintech”.
He went on to suggest that cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin could boost the UK’s status as a financial hub.
He said in his article for The Conversation: “No longer having to coordinate and agree with 27 EU countries should enable the UK to be more nimble which could be a big advantage in attempting to corner emerging areas such as green investment and fintech.
“This could include developing and regulating new financial products that allow investors to positively engage with climate change finance and cryptocurrencies.
“This would be a more beneficial approach to taking the financial sector forward than to focus on deregulation in a ‘big bang 2.0’.
“The unavoidable reality is that financial services business and jobs will continue to be lost as a result of Brexit.
“But with a thoughtful, future-focused approach to managing the sector, there is also plenty of scope for it to rebound.”
Policy chair at the City of London Corporation, Catherine McGuinness, has played down the loss of share volume to Amsterdam.
She said: “We’ve always known that some EU-facing business would have to leave the City of London following Brexit, whatever the shape of the deal.
“However, significantly fewer jobs have shifted from the City because of Brexit than was expected, and we remain very confident about the fundamental strengths of the City for the future.”