German banks see the influx of foreign banks into Frankfurt in the wake of Brexit as a chance to reinvigorate their flagging industry group and boost their lobbying leverage. The once-powerful Association of German Banks has seen its influence decline in recent years but now hopes closer links with the Brexiteers will restore its clout.
The industry group, known by its German acronym BdB, may even seek to merge with the separate Foreign Bankers Association (VAB) in order to consolidate their interests and to make its much more considerable resources available to the foreign institutions. Ultimately the German group hopes to become “the” international banking lobby for all of Europe, taking over the role of the highly influential British Bankers’ Association.
“Germany as a financial center will become significantly more international with Brexit and that must be reflected in the BdB,” Christian Ossig, the newly installed co-chief executive of the industry group, told Handelsblatt. “Eventually we want to become the most international banking association in Europe.”