We have spoken to a lot of our clients and we didn’t really hear that they thought leaving the EU would lead to less regulation as far as their sectors are concerned. If you look at the competition side, you’re really looking at a fairly global system of enforcement these days, so I don’t think that there would be significant changes in the way competition law is enforced in the UK at a general level. But, of course, there are interesting developments if you look a little bit more at the detail.

我们与许多客户谈过,并没有听他们说英国退出欧盟后,他们行业的监管会更宽松。从竞争法来看,当前执法体系的全球化水平较高,因此我认为,总体上英国竞争法的执行方式不会有大改变。当然,从细节来看,还是会发生一些有趣的变化。

For example, there are all these state aid rules under the EU Treaty and they would clearly fall away in the event of a Brexit i.e. the prohibition on paying or providing benefits to companies on a discriminatory basis. But interestingly, that was a set of regulations that the UK has always been very keen on, because the UK has always promoted greater competition and a level playing field and was concerned that that wasn’t always safe-guarded in other member states. So the bit of regulation we would lose in Europe, or vis-à-vis Europe, is regulation which we think is ‘good regulation’. On the other hand, if you look at merger control, for example, clearly if one were to leave the EU, one would lose the benefit of the one-stop-shop merger filing regime in Brussels. So where today, you would file only in Brussels and that would cover you both in the UK and elsewhere in Europe, if you meet certain thresholds, after Brexit it is absolutely likely that you will have to file both in Brussels, to cover the EU member states affected by your merger, as well as potentially having to do a parallel filing in the UK. So in some ways, there is more regulation that captures a business operating both in Europe and in the UK.

比如,欧盟条约对成员国援助本国企业做出了一套规则,即禁止有区别地向企业公司提供优待。英国一旦退欧,这些规则显然都会失效。但有意思的是,这正是英国一直极力推行的规则,因为英国向来鼓励竞争,追求公平的竞争环境,也担心其他成员国不能始终捍卫竞争和公平的竞争环境。因此,英国退出欧盟之后,与欧洲相比,我们就会失去我们所认为的“好的规则”。另一方面,例如,在并购监管上,某个成员国如退出欧盟,显然就不再享有欧盟内部的一站式并购申报制度。目前的情况是,如果并购案达到一定的门槛,只需在布鲁塞尔申报,便能覆盖英国和欧洲其他地方;但是,英国退出欧盟后,就绝对有可能得在布鲁塞尔申报,以覆盖并购相关成员国,同时可能还需要在英国再次申报。因此,在某些方面,同时在欧洲和英国经营的企业面临的监管更多了。

Most of our clients today don’t operate just in the UK, they operate across Europe and, indeed, often globally, and so I think it is in everyone’s interest that Europe is as effective in organisation of states as it can be, which is a force for good when it comes to growth and productivity, rather than the source of red tape and complexity. I think the UK has always argued quite effectively in Europe for more market-oriented outcomes and I think the UK leaving Europe and leaving the EU policy-making and legislative process may well mean that an important voice is lost in the debate within Europe.

我们的大多数客户不只在英国经营,也在整个欧洲乃至全球范围内经营业务。因此,我认为,欧洲国家如果能最有效地组织起来,是符合各方利益的,在促进经济增长、推动生产力发展方面将发挥良好的作用,而不会带来繁琐、复杂的手续。在市场化方面,我认为英国一直都是一个有力的推动者,因此,英国退出欧盟,退出欧盟决策和立法程序,意味着欧盟内部辩论将失去一个重要的声音。

I, as a German who has lived for many years and has always worked in London, I look at this perhaps differently from some others in this firm and in London. Europe, for us in Germany, has always been more than an economic project. It’s been a project which is really one of integration and it’s been a peace-making initiative, which has worked phenomenally well, if one steps back from the detail and looks at the bigger picture. Therefore, you see this very high level of commitment to Europe as a principle and the question is: ‘How do we make it work?’, not ‘Are in or are we out?.

作为一个德国人,我在伦敦住了很多年,也一直在伦敦工作,我与所内部分同事及一些伦敦人的看法可能不同。对于德国人来说,欧洲一直以来不仅代表着经济合作,从整体上看,这是一个一体化计划,也是一个和平倡议,而且运行得非常好。因此,如果我们从原则上高度认同欧洲,那么问题就应该是“我们怎么让它成功”,而不是“我们是留下还是退出”。