06:04 GMT +321 July 2019
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    'London Is Open, Tech Is Flag Bearer': Thriving Business Future Despite Brexit

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    London looks set to remain as the European capital of the tech world as major companies seek to invest further in jobs despite earlier fears that Brexit might force many to quit Britain.

    Facebook has announced on December 4 that it will be moving at least 800 new tech jobs to London and under the plans it will provide employment for 2,300 by the end of next year in the English capital.

    READ MORE: Buoyed Despite Brexit: Second Largest Facebook Hub to Open in London

    The company's expansion in Britain is a "huge endorsement" of the country's attractiveness to tech companies, according to Gerard Grech, chief executive of Tech City UK, a government-backed initiative that helps start-up and scale-up digital tech companies accelerate their growth. 

    Wherever big tech firms choose to locate, small firms want to be also, because there is a great advantage to be gained in being close to the networks, resources and dynamism of these global companies, he noted. 

    "London remains the European center of the tech world and we must do all that we can to maintain its superiority, as well as helping other parts of the UK with thriving tech sectors to take what has worked in London and adapt it for their communities," Mr. Grech told Sputnik.

    In 2018 Tech City UK will be renamed Tech Nation as it expands its UK operations outside of London by offering start-up advice, research and programmes to other digital tech companies operating in 10 regions across Britain.

    "The UK has many attractions to entrepreneurs and big companies alike, not least its deep pool of tech talent, its creative industries, the availability of finance and its can-do culture, as well as its world-leading universities. Facebook and other big companies enrich the tech community here and they demonstrate the height of what is achievable to both entrepreneurs trying to raise their first funding and to the fast-growing group of British unicorns that are already on the path to success," the chief executive explained to Sputnik.

    The decision by Facebook is a welcome shot in the arm for the UK amid all the uncertainty surrounding Brexit as it will see the US tech giant's workforce by more than 50 percent at its new headquarters in Rathbone Place, just off London's Oxford Street.

    It comes as Google has also confirmed plans to create a new head office in the King's Cross district of London with the potential for 3,000 jobs.

    Julian David, chief executive of Tech UK, said the announcements blast out a clear message: "London is open, and tech is the flag bearer."

    "It is great to see a world-leading company like Facebook continuing to invest in London’s renowned tech ecosystem, despite the uncertainties surrounding Brexit," he told Sputnik.

    "Facebook has chosen to be among like-minded businesses and the brightest minds in placing its very first in-house start-up incubator, Ldn_Lab, in the UK. Large businesses are key to supporting innovation and we are excited to see what becomes of the start-ups that can grow and scale as a result of this endeavor," he added. 

    Tailored Regulation

    Another attraction for the high tech giants, is that the UK will be setting its own regulatory system.

    Patrick Minford, professor of applied economics at Cardiff Business School at Cardiff University, told Sputnik the UK will be setting its own regulatory system, operating under common law.

    "Britain has a record of light regulation in service industries — as shown by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development surveys."


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