Frankfurt is expecting up to 10,000 financial industry workers to relocate from Britain to Germany’s banking capital as a consequence of Brexit, according to a Frankfurt lobby group.
“We’re going to benefit most,” Hubertus Vath, managing director at Frankfurt Main Finance, told reporters in London on Thursday.
“Within the eurozone you need to be in Frankfurt to service the area,” he added.
Several U.K. based banks are poised to announce at least part of their business operations are being moved from London to another European city, with countries on the continent scrambling to attract top financial officials.
City lenders are attempting to maintain their services throughout the bloc as the U.K. begins its withdrawal from the European Union (EU).
Brexit negotiations have not yet started, however, the U.K. took a step closer to beginning formal negotiations with the bloc as parliament cleared its first legislative hurdle. The U.K. parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of starting the formal two year negotiation process with the EU on Wednesday.
Britain could be set to complete the legislative process by March 7 which would meet Prime Minister Theresa May’s self-imposed April deadline.
UK has 80% of EU ‘high earners’
Angela Merkel’s financial powerhouse has been touted as a potential relocation hotspot for London’s bankers given it can boast somewhat of a financial hub given its significant euro flows and the presence of the European Central Bank.
However, Frankfurt is reasonably small in size, has a relatively unexciting reputation and must compete with several other European cities. Paris is a key competitor of Frankfurt although smaller cities such as Amsterdam, Dublin and Luxembourg are also vying to lure banks, insurers and fund managers throughout Brexit negotiations.
The U.K. reportedly has over 80 percent of the continent’s “high earning” financial professionals, according to the latest research by the European Banking Authority.
Britain boasts 4,133 of the 5,124 bankers, fund managers and compliance professionals across the EU that earned over 1 million euros ($1.07 million) in 2015, according to the new research.
The European Banking Authority is based in London although has announced it would leave its office post-Brexit.