LONDON (AFP) – Lloyd’s of London will open a Brussels office in early 2019 due to Brexit, the insurance market said Thursday, one day after the UK government triggered the nation’s EU divorce.
“Lloyd’s, the specialist insurance and reinsurance market, has announced it will be setting up a new European insurance company to be located in Brussels,” it said in a statement, after British Prime Minister Theresa May activated the two-year countdown to EU departure.
“The intention is for the company to be ready to write business for the 1st January 2019 renewal season, subject to regulatory approval.”
Lloyd’s, which gave no indication of potential London job losses, had repeatedly warned before last year’s referendum that it could move some operations to elsewhere within the EU in the event of Brexit.
The group added Thursday that its new Brussels subsidiary would allow it to underwrite insurance risks across the 27 EU nations that will remain following Britain’s exit.
“The company will be able to write risks from all 27 European Union and three European Economic Area states after the United Kingdom has left the EU, providing our customers and partners continued access to the innovative solutions of the Lloyd?s market,” it said.
Lloyd?s Chief Executive Inga Beale also added that Brussels met its “critical” requirements of a “robust regulatory framework in a central European location”.
She said: “I am excited about the opportunities this venture will offer the market by providing that important European access efficiently.?
Nine months after the shock British vote to quit the EU, Prime Minister May on Wednesday formally activated Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, meaning Britain is set to leave the bloc in 2019.