Tuesday

22nd Jun 2021

EU sets out criteria for relocating UK agencies

  • London will wave goodbye to the EU banking and medicines regulator in 2019 (Photo: Rob Bye)

EU countries bidding to host the bloc’s banking and drugs regulators after Brexit will have to submit their entries by 31 July.

According to an 18-page document circulated among member states earlier this week, a decision will be made by October on which city should host the now London-based European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the European Banking Authority (EBA).

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

The document, seen by the Financial Times and Bloomberg, was co-authored by European Council president Donald Tusk and European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker.

It says the relocated agencies must be functional by the time the UK leaves the EU in March 2019.

The criteria say that no country can host both agencies and that cities will have to be able to provide hotel space for an average 30,000 visitors a year for the medicines agency and 9,000 people for the banking regulator.

The new host city must have adequate international schooling for the staff’s children and needs to provide space for the drug agency’s archive of 34,000 boxes.

The two agencies employ more than 1,000 staff.

The criteria also cites a 2003 principle to place new agencies in new member states as something to be taken into account during the decision making, but the document points out that finding a new home for the two agencies means relocation rather than setting up a new agency.

Currently, no EU body is based in Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Cyprus, or Slovakia.

More than 20 EU countries are vying for one or both of the agencies.

The Commission will assess applications by mid-September and EU ministers will decide in October.

There will be rounds of voting until two finalists emerge and the winner will need a majority of votes from fellow EU members.

The relocation will come with sizeable costs that the EU expects Britain to pay for.

The EMA will have to pay rent of €16 million a year for its London headquarters until 2039 based on a recently signed lease without the possibility to get out of the agreement before that.

The EBA’s rent runs until 2020, but the agency can leave early if it pays a fee of around €3 million.

Crowded race to win EU medicines agency

As cities line up to take over the European Medicines Agency some fear a kerfuffle that could destabilise the agency's work and slow down the pace of approving new medicines.

Barnier unveils EU's Brexit goals

Barnier to set out EU negotiating positions on citizens' rights, divorce costs, and Ireland in Brexit talks, amid a prickly atmosphere between London and Brussels.

EUobserved

Scramble for UK agencies paves way for Trumpian claims

The Spanish health minister this week bragged that Barcelona was “the best city”, had “the best building”, and “the best infrastructure” to host the EU's medicines agency post-Brexit.

News in Brief

  1. UEFA: No rainbow 'pride' stadium illumination at Hungary match
  2. Italian PM calls to move Euro 2020 final from London to Rome
  3. UN warns of 'cascade of human rights setbacks'
  4. Minister urges Belgians to ignore speculation over dead soldier
  5. Swedish government toppled in no-confidence vote
  6. EU takes aim at British TV and film perks
  7. Iran nuclear deal: President-elect Raisi issues warning over talks
  8. EU agriculture spending 'failed' to reduce farming emissions

Post-Brexit talks in last push until Sunday

The probability of no deal has increased as a last-ditch effort by British prime minister Boris Johnson and EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen did not bridge gaps.

Opinion

What a No Deal Brexit is going to look like

Research by the London School of Economics forecasts that a no-deal Brexit could be three times as bad as the pandemic for the UK economy, writes mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and the president of the Committee of the Regions.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNineteen demands by Nordic young people to save biodiversity
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersSustainable public procurement is an effective way to achieve global goals
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council enters into formal relations with European Parliament
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersWomen more active in violent extremist circles than first assumed
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersDigitalisation can help us pick up the green pace
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersCOVID19 is a wake-up call in the fight against antibiotic resistance

Latest News

  1. Latest EU sanctions to bite Belarus dictator's income
  2. Libyan detention centres must end, EU says
  3. Poland and Hungary sanctions procedure back after pandemic
  4. Sánchez risks 'betrayal' call with pardon for jailed Catalans
  5. EU a 'Wild West' for China's unsafe toys, gadgets and clothes
  6. 'You'll never walk alone' - our message to women
  7. Too soon to lift EU sanctions on Burundi, NGOs warn
  8. EU to wage economic war on Belarus dictator

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us