Since Barclays Bank announced a review of its Gibraltar operations in late March this year, the Chamber has lobbied at various levels within the bank to highlight the importance of Barclays to the jurisdiction.
Barclays has been a key part of Gibraltar’s economic development over the last 125 years ensuring that the community’s banking needs are met: current accounts, savings accounts, loans and overdrafts, mortgages both personal and commercial, foreign exchange facilities and cash management. The vast majority of Barclays Gibraltar’s business is local to the jurisdiction and is not dependent on transactions from elsewhere.
Barclays has been good for Gibraltar, but Gibraltar has also been good for Barclays.
The bank’s Gibraltar operations are part of Barclays Wealth and it is understood that no other parts of the bank’s Wealth operations are under a review. No reason has been given. The bank employs around 110 people in Gibraltar although a number of key staff have found jobs elsewhere in recent months.
Having taken soundings from its members across several sectors the Chamber is concerned about the outcome of Barclays’ review which is due to be announced towards the end of July.
The Chamber has met with the local manager, Nigel Riley and has corresponded with the bank’s CEO, Anthony Jenkins, in London to assess the sentiment behind the review, but the Chamber’s board has not received the level of reassurance requested.
In light of the continuing uncertainty with Barclays the Chamber prepared an extensive briefing paper for the All Party Parliamentary Gibraltar Group (APPGG) to enrol their support. The Chairman of the APPGG, Jim Dobbin MP, met with his committee to consider the Chamber’s report and they have agreed to take up the matter.
As a first step, Jim Dobbin has arranged to meet with the Vice President of Public Policy for Barclays later this week. It is hoped that Barclays will respond positively. Barclays has been an important institution for Gibraltar’s business community and the Chamber is keen that it remains so for many years to come. Local businesses, both large and small, depend on the range of banking facilities and security which Barclays offers.
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