Luxembourg has claimed the legal right to host the London-based European Banking Authority after Brexit, a government spokeswoman told AFP news agency today.

Citing a European Union law dating back to 1965, Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel made his case in a letter to EU Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker, the spokeswoman said.

"Luxembourg's claim to host the EBA is nothing more than the implementation of this agreement that is still valid today," the spokeswoman said.

"We want the 1965 decision to be respected and therefore claim that the EBA's new host should be Luxembourg."

Last October, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan officially offered Ireland as the possible new location of the European Banking Authority post-Brexit.

The Government said then that “Ireland, with its significant financial services sector and efficient transport links to other European capitals, is ideally suited for the Authority's relocation”.

The EBA is the EU agency is responsible for harmonising banking supervision across member states.

It is perhaps best known for its regular stress tests on the EU's financial sector, which have become a vital focus for investors and regulators in the wake of the global financial crisis.

As part of the negotiations associated with the UK's decision to withdraw from the EU, the authority will have to relocate to an EU country, from its current location in London.

The core areas of the EBA's work are regulatory policy, supervisory convergence and risk assessment, as well as consumer protection and financial innovation.

It has around 170 employees from 25 different countries.