As the British government scrambles to find a business plan in the wake of last month's Brexit vote, France has outlined new measures to attract finance jobs from London. David Pollard reports.
UPSOT (English) UK PRIME MINISTER, DAVID CAMERON, SAYING: "Business is very clear to us as well ... whether they agree or disagree with the decision the country's made, they know that they've got to go on and make the most of the opportunities we have." The debate is on: how to protect Britain from a post-referendum recession. How to maintain London as the world's premier centre for financial services ... When others want a piece of that lucrative pie. France's President Hollande described the banking industry as his enemy during his election campaign. So it was of note that his prime minister made a snap appearance this week at the French financial industry's lobby, Paris Europlace. The industry there sees an opportunity. So does Manuel Valls: France will make its tax regime for expats the most favourable in Europe, he said. With special expat tax privileges extended from five years to eight. It'll be easier, he promised, for foreign firms to set up shop there. UPSOT (English & French) FRENCH PRIME MINISTER, MANUEL VALLS, SAYING: "Welcome ... now more than ever is the time to come. " Though Paris may not be the only one on the hunt - especially for London's lion's share of a five trillion dollars a day forex market. (SOUNDBITE)(English) CIBC, HEAD OF FX STRATEGY, JEREMY STRETCH, SAYING: "Clearly, France will be looking at opportunities although I suspect that if there were to be any opportunities of a reduction in employment and / or trading volumes and transactions, Frankfurt would probably be a better or more likely beneficiary than perhaps France." The head of London's financial services district wants swift action to preserve its business. The risk ahead: that a Brexit may not only end the free movement of workers into Britain - but start the free movement of banks and insurers out of it. If and when UK financial services lose the so-called passporting rights that give them access to Europe's single market.