Bob Diamond has told some of the lender's main shareholders that it is no longer his decision whether or not the institute will continue to be based in the UK, Sky News reports.
The industry figure, speaking in regards to the Independent Commission on Banking's (ICB's) final report - which is due out next week - said: "It's no longer a question of whether Barclays wants to stay in the UK but whether the UK wants Barclays."
However, people with knowledge on the matter said the inference was not any kind of threat that the bank - which has been in existence for more than 300 years - is looking to up-sticks and move away.
This decision may be influenced, though, by the manner in which the ICB - led by Sir John Vickers - decides to implement a ring-fencing tactic separating investment banking operations and dealings with retail bank deposits.
By Asim Shah