EU countries are pitted against each other to win competition to relocate EU agencies from London

Catherine Neilan
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The European Banking Authority and European Medicines Agency are both based in Canary Wharf (Source: Getty)

Countries from across the EU are vying to be named the new home for two major agencies being relocated from London after Brexit.

The European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency, based in Canary Wharf in London, are seen as the first spoils of Brexit, and around 20 countries are expected to enter the bidding process before the deadline closes at midnight tonight.

The two groups employ just over 1,000 staff between them, but the highly skilled employees will also bring their families and plenty of business, including around 40,000 hotel stays each year, according to the BBC.

Countries have printed glossy brochures, posted promotional videos online and hired lobbying firms for the bid, which is being assessed by the European Commission.

Dublin is among the cities hoping to be successful. The Republic of Ireland published its glossy brochure last month, promising a "seamless transition and continuity of service as Ireland is English speaking and culturally similar to London and is within the GMT time zone which helps maintain EBA routine with no change in working hours for other countries".

France and Germany are also vying for the business. Former French President Francois Hollande wrote personally to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, saying “Paris hosts four of the eight largest banks in the EU27 … [and] it’s essential that the EBA is implanted in the heart of the financial ecosystem, allowing for a constant interaction with professionals in the sector.”

Germany, meanwhile, is pitching for the EBA to be relocated to Frankfurt while the EMA be moved to Bonn.

The winners will be announced in November.

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