Australia-based QBE has been obtained a license from the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) to set up a new subsidiary in the country.

Operating under the brand name of QBE Europe, the new company will commence underwriting during the fourth quarter of this year.

The creation of the Belgian subsidiary will enable QBE to maintain continued passporting rights across the European Economic Area (EEA) post-Brexit.

The newly established entity will use the existing base that QBE maintains in Brussels.

QBE Europe will operate branches in Bermuda, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

QBE Europe CEO Richard Pryce said: “Our priority throughout the Brexit process has been to provide seamless continuity and certainty for our customers and staffs, whatever the final terms of the UK’s exit.

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“I am delighted that our Brexit programme is on track and that we have reached this important stage in our plan to continue to provide a full-service capability offering to our customers.”