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UK’s financial role damaged by Brexit

Ever since the UK voted to leave the EU in 2016, the City of London knew it would have to fight to keep its crown as Europe’s leading financial centre.

Just a matter of weeks after the transition period ended on New Year’s eve, Amsterdam became Europe’s largest share trading centre.

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This dislodging of the UK as the main hub for the European market is an early indication of the direction of travel that awaits the City post-Brexit. It also puts paid to the hope that the loss of key financial services activities from London might be gradual.

This is because one issue not addressed in the Brexit talks was that of financial regulation. Brussels has refused so far to grant the UK “equivalence” status, that would mean the City of London could trade unhampered in European markets.

The negotiations on future financial regulation appear to have run into the sand. The government’s incompetence is doubly staggering because Britain has given the EU equivalence, allowing EU banks to operate in UK markets, a decision which has left the UK little leverage in the negotiations.

The impacts of Brexit are becoming clear for all to see, and combined with Covid-19 will only serve to damage the fragile UK economy even further.

Alex Orr, Marchmont Road, Edinburgh.

When are our armed forces essential?

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As the parent of a member of our armed forces, I am concerned at the way the NHS hierarchy are treating the 400 troops who are soon to be deployed on active duty overseas. Their destination is a hot spot for Covid 19.

The NHS is refusing to give these soldiers the Covid 19 vaccine. They say they are not essential workers and do not require it. Strange how we see soldiers on TV setting up and manning accommodation for the use of the NHS vaccination centres. Are they only essential when they work for the NHS?

Surely when troops are ordered into a situation where there is a very high risk of contracting Covid 19 they should receive all available protection.

Remember when they return to this country, they could be bringing back a fresh wave of infection

Name and address supplied.

Phliosophical over David Hume’s legacy

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David Hume is not well commemorated in Edinburgh. There is a less than inspiring statue in the High Street and a grim, decaying tower block in George Square.

If he is looking down from the hereafter, he may well feel relieved that he is no longer to have his name attached to such a building.

John Bowles, Nicolson Street, Edinburgh.

Scotland’s economic deficit is a fiction

For a self-proclaimed numerate person, Jill Stephenson (Letters, February 15) hasn’t grasped the fact that Scotland’s deficit is a fiction.

Any sane person would know that Scotland, with 8.2% of the UK population, couldn’t possibly be responsible for 60% of the UK deficit, but that’s what the Tory-designed GERS asks us to believe.

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Scotland’s economic growth as a UK region has been half that of similarly sized EU nations. UK state pensions are the lowest in the developed world, inequality and poverty are rising.

International economics professor Mark Blyth, a Scot, explains: “the UK growth model is unsustainable and Scotland can do better than simply subsist on inter-regional transfers.”


Leah Gunn Barrett, Merchiston Crescent, Edinburgh.