Britain and Switzerland agree post-Brexit deal for insurers

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LONDON (Reuters) - Britain and Switzerland have agreed to allow insurers to trade freely between the two countries after Brexit, Britain’s finance ministry said on Friday.

Both are home to major global insurers such as Swiss Re, Zurich Insurance Group, Aviva and Prudential.

The deal will replicate the effects of the European Union’s insurance agreement with Switzerland and will come into force once that agreement ceases to apply in Britain.

British finance minister, Philip Hammond, and Ueli Maurer, president of the Swiss Confederation, signed the agreement at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

“Links to financial industries like the Swiss insurance market are important for global financial systems and it’s vital that trade continues between our two countries so firms have the certainty they need to continue to do business and invest in the UK’s bright future,” Hammond said in a statement.

The agreement allows insurers to open branches in each other’s jurisdictions.

Last December Britain agreed terms with the United States to mirror the “covered agreement” on insurance between the United States and the EU.

Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by David Goodman