PM: deal with EU is ‘there to be done’ as UK Chancellor looks to lure tech ‘unicorns’


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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said that an agreement with the European Union on trade, security and fisheries is ‘there to be done’ ahead of a critical week as negotiations enter last stages.

Johnson has promised to ‘redouble efforts to reach a deal’ following conversations with the European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. The development over the weekend follows efforts by Lord Frost, the UK’s chief negotiator, to hold a series of high-level talks on outstanding issues. Frost’s EU counterpart Michel Barnier arrived in London on Sunday but warned beforehand that a compromise is needed to unlock a deal.

Meanwhile, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is seeking to overhaul the UK’s public listings regime in order to attract more high-value technology ‘unicorns’ (private companies carrying a valuation of over $1 billion) to London’s financial markets. Sky News reports that the move is aimed at improving London’s competitiveness in a post-Brexit era.

A review of the listing regime is to follow, and it is expected that the review will be led by Lord Hill, the UK’s former commissioner to the EU. Lord Hill is expected to recommend measures that would pave the way for companies to list in London with dual class share structures.

London’s markets have been keen on an amendment to the listings regime while ensuring the City remains known for its robust protections for investors in corporate governance standards. The parent company of the London Stock Exchange is hoping to see a greater number of British unicorns list on London’s markets, seeking the successes seen across the pond in New York.

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