Keynote: The Government's Approach to Innovative Finance & P2P Lending

The Government’s Approach to Innovative Finance & P2P Lending
Harriett Baldwin, MP, Economic Secretary to Treasury (City Minister)

Ms. Baldwin said she sees it as the government’s responsibility to inject choice and competition into the P2P sector and incentivise banks to offer the best possible level of service to their customers. At the same time, the barriers for new entrants should be kept low, and a single strong regulator is an important step towards creating real opportunities for innovative actors to enter the market.

P2P lending is a new form of finance that the government wants to see grow and evolve, Ms. Baldwin added, and the government is proud that the UK has the largest alternative finance sector in Europe. She noted that P2P, which has been under the supervision of the FCA since April 2014, is only one part of fin tech. in 2015, investment in the fintech sector grew by 136% to reach £410 million, which accounts for 42% of all fintech investment in Europe.

Ms. Baldwin noted that when people think of fin tech, they mostly think of payment services, but there are other exciting areas, such as robo advisors, that make the sector attractive to both consumers and investors. In her view, fintech is a means to an end – a new way to provide financial services – and the government is committed to put in place policies that support this growing sector.