GUEST COMMENT: I am an expat who wants to stay in London

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I am Swiss and I was schooled in France, but London is my home. I have lived here for 18 years, initially as a banker, and for the past decade as the owner of a headhunting business.

Switzerland is a fantastic place, and the quality of life there is exceptional. But I would not choose to live there unless I was retired. I have money, but I am not phenomenally rich. And if you are still working or you are running a business, Switzerland offers few tax advantages over London.

I live in London because it is an incredibly stimulating place to be. From a business perspective, I also find that being based here is a source of prestige elsewhere in Europe. If you go to Paris, Milan or Frankfurt and you come from London, you have a unique cachet.

There are circumstances in which I would leave the City. If taxes rose again, I may consider leaving, but they would have to go a lot higher than the levels currently proposed.

However, for me, and for most expats, the real reason for leaving London would be a lack of work. This is not a place to stay if you have nothing to do.

Most of us live with other people of our nationality in expensive areas like South Kensington. If we have children, we pay high fees for them to be schooled in our home language. Unlike British people, we do not feel that we have the option of moving to a cheaper area or schooling our children in a state institution. If the jobs go, we must go too.

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