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Britain opposes EU cap on bankers' bonuses

Britain opposes EU plans to cap bonus payments for bankers for fear London will lose its status as the financial center of Europe.

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Proposed bonus caps in Europe could come into effect next year. (AFP/Getty Images)

Britain has rejected European Union plans to cap bankers’ bonuses at two-years’ salary, fearing the restriction could hurt London’s status as the financial center of Europe.

The BBC reported British Chancellor George Osborne told a meeting of EU finance ministers on Tuesday that he could not back the plans, which look set to be approved next month. 

"I cannot support the proposal currently on the table," Osborne was quoted as saying after the meeting.

Britain is the only member of the 27-nation bloc opposing the cap.

The Associated Press said the proposed legislation – part of a broader package of financial rules, known as the Basel III regulations – would limit bonuses to one year’s base salary or double that if enough of the bank’s shareholders agreed. 

EU finance ministers were expected "to give wide political approval" to the curbs, the AP said.

London’s mayor, Boris Johnson, has been a vocal opponent of the measures, which were approved by European politicians last week.

"This is possibly the most deluded measure to come from Europe since Diocletian tried to fix the price of groceries across the Roman Empire,” Johnson was quoted by the Christian Science Monitor as saying last week.

"The most this measure can hope to achieve is a boost for Zurich and Singapore and New York at the expense of a struggling EU."
 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/united-kingdom/130305/britain-eu-cap-bankers-bonuses-bonus