(Bloomberg) -- Barclays Plc left a cap on its bankers’ bonuses even after regulators told lenders they can pay their staff as they like as part of the government’s broader push to make post-Brexit Britain more attractive as a financial center.

The bank’s board continued to limit bankers’ bonuses to a maximum of twice their base pay for their performance in 2023, a cap that was in line with the UK government’s earlier requirements, Chairman Nigel Higgins said in a letter to shareholders. The board’s remuneration committee will consider lifting that cap in 2024 and beyond, he said. 

“Whether or not the company changes the cap in the future, pay across the group will continue to be managed in line with Barclays’ remuneration philosophy, which includes a focus on rewarding sustainable performance,” Higgins said in the letter. 

His comments come after a grim bonus season in which Barclays handed dozens of investment bankers no bonus at all, Bloomberg News previously reported. Tensions have also been running high as executives have spent recent months trying to recover from the period of higher-than-usual attrition last year. 

The European Union first introduced the cap on bonuses for banks’ so-called “material risk takers” in 2014 as part of its response to public fury over the financial crisis. UK regulators lifted that cap beginning October 31 and Barclays previously said in its annual report that a “relatively small number” of employees would be impacted by that change. 

Barclays’s move shows that UK regulators’ efforts to lift the cap won’t open the floodgates of banker pay. Indeed, lenders have warned that there would be challenges to reverting back to their old ways of paying staffers, including with how they would go about cutting elevated fixed pay packages to re-balance compensation and whether existing and new employees would be treated differently.

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