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Chancellor unveils UK FinTech Sector Strategy

The UK chancellor is expected to outline his FinTech Sector Strategy today, which will include a new cryptoassets task force, new steps in ‘robo-regulation’ and a new FinTech bridge with Australia.

Philip Hammond is expected to make the announcements at the HM Treasury’s International FinTech conference, and will say: “From the square mile in London to Scotland’s Silicon Glen, the UK leads the world in harnessing the power of FinTech as we create an economy fit for the future.

“I am committed to helping the sector grow and flourish, and our ambitious Sector Strategy sets out how we will ensure the UK remains at the cutting edge of the digital revolution. As part of that, a new task force will help the UK to manage the risks around Cryptoassets, as well as harnessing the potential benefits of the underlying technology.”

The government’s Fintech Sector Strategy will include:

  • A Cryptoassets Task Force consisting of HM Treasury, the Bank of England, and the Financial Conduct Authority. This will help the UK to be at the forefront of harnessing the potential benefits of the underlying technology, while guarding against potential risks.
  •  ‘Robo-regulation’ pilot schemes to help new FinTech companies, and the financial services industry more widely, comply with regulations by building software which would automatically ensure they follow the rules, saving them time and money.
  • Appointing three new Fintech Regional Envoys to ensure the benefits of fintech are felt across the UK.
  • Creating a set of industry standards which will enable fintech firms to more easily partner with existing banks.
  • Helping new, small FinTech firms to provide complex financial services and thereby grow their businesses and reach new customers. Industry and government will work together to create ‘shared platforms’ which will help remove the barriers that these firms face in setting up new systems.
  •  A Connect with Work programme developed by the government’s Fintech Delivery Panel to help fintech firms to take advantage of the UK’s diverse workforce.

Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, will also announce that Tech City UK is creating a nationwide FinTech Programme, which will seek to support companies across the sector.

Digital and Culture Secretary Matt Hancock said: “We are determined to make Britain the best place to start and grow a digital business while giving consumers more choice when it comes to managing their money. This new nationwide fintech programme will help startups right across the country flourish in the future and spread the benefits of this pioneering technology.”

The chancellor and Scott Morrison, Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia, will also sign a new Fintech Bridge agreement in a bid to open a new international market for UK firms wanting to expand and sell their services in Australia.

Commenting on the UK-Australia Fintech Bridge, Philip Hammond said:“Today’s UK-Australia Fintech Bridge agreement is our most ambitious to date. It will bring together our regulators, policy makers, and private sectors to build an improved fintech ecosystem to support the growth of our FinTech markets.

“This is underpinned by the most advanced regulatory partnership that the FCA has signed, connecting the UK to a market of 24 million people and ensuring stronger commercial ties with Australia’s rapidly growing fintech sector.”