Fox and Trump team up to gut banking rules, risking new financial crisis

13 April 2017 - 5:00pm
Press release

The UK confirmed today that it is keen to ensure the deregulation of financial services is included in a new trade deal with the USA - a move which threatens to unpick critical banking regulations and risks triggering a new financial crisis.

UK Trade Secretary Liam Fox MP said that there is potential for the UK to lead the "next financial services revolution" which will make the last "look almost an underachievement". Fox added that he has "an appetite to liberalise in every sector".

Fox's comments come in the same week that Donald Trump outlined that he intends to destroy banking rules brought in after the 2008 financial crisis under the Dodd-Frank Act: "We're doing a major elimination of the horrendous Dodd-Frank regulations, keeping some obviously, but getting rid of many."

War on Want Senior Trade Campaigner Mark Dearn said: "Under TTIP, we saw the UK lead the charge to use a trade deal to unpick critical financial services regulations.

"Now that Donald Trump has confirmed that he wants to trash rules that stop his friends getting loans, it seems certain that any Brexit UK trade deal with Trump's USA will give a green light to banking deregulation, risking a new financial crisis.

"It’s clear that the UK government is pursuing an ideological agenda to champion the interests of corporate elites in trade negotiations. We already have 'Empire 2.0' plans for some of the world's poorest countries, we're happy to sell weapons to human rights abusers, and Theresa May refuses to rule out selling off the NHS in a trade deal with Trump's USA."

Under EU-US trade deal TTIP, the European Commission - with the UK its most vociferous supporter - repeatedly pushed for financial services to be included in the trade deal against the wishes of the Obama administration.

Giving evidence last month to a parliamentary inquiry into a future UK-US trade deal, a senior civil servant confirmed: the UK was "not the only country arguing that financial services mattered, but we were certainly one, if not the loudest".

Trump previously said that: “We expect to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank because, frankly, I have so many people, friends of mine, who have nice businesses who can’t borrow money."

War on Want believes any UK-US trade deal must adhere to principles of trade justice.


Notes to Editors

For more information, contact Mark Dearn on +44 (0) 7804 289 680, or Ross Hemingway on +44 (0) 793 550728

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