French Finance Minister Michel Sapin cautioned against a “divide-the-spoils” approach to the British decision to leave the European Union, saying it would be both wrong and damaging.
“I didn’t appreciate the red carpet when it was rolled out to France and I don’t intend to roll it out the other way” to bring business here, Sapin told reporters in Aix-en-Provence, France, on Friday.
Since the British vote one week ago, speculation has intensified that banks and airlines and other industries may be forced to shift jobs to countries in the remaining 27-members of the EU.
French President Francois Hollande himself said that clearing houses may be forced to move from London -- an implicit suggestion that Paris may benefit from the so-called Brexit decision. Sapin declined to comment on clearing houses specifically.
Sapin said it’s too early to judge the impact of the British vote on French or euro area growth, though he expressed confidence that the recovery will hold up in the months ahead.
“The growth engines are in France and the euro zone are currently consumption and investment,” he said. “These aren’t very sensitive to what’s happening in Britain. In the medium and long term, what’s important is to remove uncertainty.”