John Glen’s resignation as city minister has been a disappointment on the Square Mile as he was seen as his brief guide to reforming the financial services sector after Brexit.
Glenn, who has been economics minister at the Treasury since 2018 under three chancellors, said he could not stay on because of his “complete lack of confidence” in Boris Johnson as prime minister.
“I have a complete lack of confidence in your continued leadership of our country and I can no longer reconcile my commitment to this role and the financial services sector,” he said. in his resignation letter.
Glen, a close ally of Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid, resigned as prime minister and health minister respectively on Tuesday night – prompting Dozens resign from government on Wednesday.
As City Minister, Glenn has been working on major reforms to the regulatory framework for the financial services industry after Brexit, including capital markets and cryptocurrencywhich will be included in the new bill.
He was also actively involved in the government’s Solvency II Insurance Regulationthe government is looking to ease restrictions on capital requirements to secure more investment in UK infrastructure.
Glenn is wary of the excessive deregulation of New York City that Johnson supports, arguing that the city’s strength comes from stable and predictable regulation.
Miles Celic, chief executive of TheCityUK, a financial services industry lobby group, described Glenn as “a first-class minister, dedicated and committed to UK industry at home and abroad during turbulent times such as Brexit and the pandemic. Civil servants and tireless advocates”.
Financial expert Martin Lewis said Glenn’s departure was “not good news” because he had done his job. “He’s a minister and you don’t need remedial explanations on complex issues before you discuss them,” he said.
Glenn would be missed, a financial services executive said, noting that he has served longer than any other city minister.
“Frankly, he was brilliant. It was very helpful to have someone to solve the problem [in that role],” the person said, adding that it was too early to say how his departure would affect the policies he was pushing.
In his resignation letter, the former minister said he was proud to have helped guide the City of London through an uncertain period since the 2016 Brexit referendum.
“However, the recent events surrounding the handling of the appointment of the former deputy chief, and the misjudgment you have shown, have prevented me from continuing to serve in good conscience,” he said, referring to Crispincher.