London's financial center will lose its prized "EU passport" if Britain fails to secure continued access to the bloc's single market in its exit talks, ECB Governing Council member Francois Villeroy de Galhau said on Saturday. Banks based in London, Europe's biggest financial center, rely on what is called an EU passport to operate across the bloc's capital market unhindered while basing most of their staff and operations outside the euro zone in London.
The six founding members of the European Union want Britain to get on quickly with triggering the process for it to exit the bloc, Germany's Frank-Walter Steinmeier said after hosting a meeting of foreign ministers from the six. "We say here together, this process should get underway as soon as possible so that we are not left in limbo but rather can concentrate on the future of Europe," Steinmeier, Germany's foreign minister, said after the meeting in Berlin on Saturday.
HERMANNSWERDER, Germany (Reuters) - There is no desperate rush for Britain to trigger the process for it to leave the European Union, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday, leaving London some space to work out its next move after a referendum vote to leave the bloc. "Quite honestly, it should not take ages, that is true, but I would not fight now for a short time frame," Merkel told a news conference at a meeting of her party outside Berlin. (Reporting by Andreas Rinke; Writing by Paul Carrel, editing by Emma Thomasson)