Irish central bank clears over half of Brexit applications

FILE PHOTO: Offices in the Central Bank of Ireland are seen in the financial district in Dublin, Ireland November 8, 2017. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Applications have been processed from more than half the 100-plus financial-services companies that want to set up or extend operations in Ireland because of Britain’s plans to quit the European Union, the deputy governor of the Irish central bank said on Thursday.

The number of applications increased in the second half of 2018, according to a semi-annual report by the bank released on Thursday. They came from almost every sector, from investment to insurance to payment firms.

“Since the Brexit referendum, the central bank has seen an increase in the number of applications for authorisation from all sectors,” Central Bank of Ireland Deputy Governor Ed Sibley said in a statement.

“Currently over half of the Brexit applications received have been fully processed and we expect that an additional significant number will be processed in full over the coming weeks.”

Barclays, Bank of America, Standard Life Aberdeen, Legal & General Investment Management are among the companies who have chosen Dublin as a post-Brexit base, against stiff competition from rival centres including Luxembourg, Frankfurt and Paris.

The state’s foreign investment agency said Ireland gained over 4,500 jobs last year as a result of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.

Reporting by Padraic Halpin, editing by Larry King