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Interview: Mayor Khan says booming tech sector to help London through Brexit

Reuters  |  LONDON 

By Kate Holton

(Reuters) - London's status as Europe's leading hub for the tech sector will help it weather despite the best efforts of Paris, and others to compete, the British capital's said on Monday.

Britain has for years been the top European destination for foreign investment, but a survey by group (E&Y) on Monday showed and closing the gap.

According to 450 global investors surveyed by E&Y, was considered the most attractive place in for future investment, with second and Britain third. was named the most attractive city for investment, overtaking for the first time since the survey began in 2004.

But Khan said investments in London's tech sector, from the likes of Facebook, and Google, plus the city's strength in new technologies including artificial intelligence, gave him hope that would keep on attracting entrepreneurs and funding from around the world.

"and start from a low base, and frankly speaking can only go one way," Khan told on Monday at the London Tech Week conference.

"London is different to the rest of the UK. Our underlying strengths - we're the financial capital of the country, the cultural and political capital - that's not going to change."

Britain is due to exit the on March 29, 2019 but with a transition period to ease the process.

A survey released last week by London's promotional agency showed Britain remains the leading European destination for international tech investors, attracting almost three times more investment than any other European country over the past two years.

UNCERTAINTY

But Khan, who campaigned for Britain to remain in the EU, said he worried about the rest of the country and whether it could attract foreign investment at a time of such uncertainty.

Campaigners for remaining in the EU warned before the referendum that investment in Britain would fall if it voted to leave the world's biggest trade bloc.

While some international have moved to Europe, Khan said investment in new technologies gave him faith for the future.

But Khan added that he would continue to hold tech companies to a high standard, demanding that groups take responsibility for the content that appears on their site.

Khan has also previously backed transport officials in their move to strip the ride-hailing company of its licence.

"Social companies ...need to do more," he said. "They need to make sure that they themselves take responsibility for these problems rather than regulation being imposed on them."

(Reporting by Kate Holton; Editing by Gareth Jones)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, June 11 2018. 21:47 IST
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