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Financial Services Regulation 2022 - New Year briefing

The Alpha and Omega of Regulation (via Omicron)?

Having said goodbye to another year of headlines dominated by COVID-19, with a Christmas and New Year overshadowed by a mixture of good and bad news about Omicron, it's not yet clear what degree of optimism about the year ahead is justified. At the very least, it is to be hoped that the World Health Organisation will not find it has to exhaust the Greek alphabet in naming any future new variants of concern.

More Brexit-related turbulence is on the way: here's what to expect

There is significant disagreement between the UK and the EU over the Northern Ireland protocol, with much speculation that the UK will shortly seek to introduce "safeguard measures". Meanwhile, it has been suggested that the EU could respond to such a move by terminating the UK-EU Brexit trade deal (or at least threatening to do so). We explain below why the EU may be considering what some might see as a "nuclear" option – but as we also point out, even if the UK and the EU manage to settle their differences, changes scheduled for 1 January 2022 mean that there is a risk of trade disruption in any event over the coming months.

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