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Brexit may take longer than thought, warns Hammond

13th Dec 16 11:45 am

When will Brexit be finalised?

Chancellor Philip Hammond has claimed that Brexit might take longer than two years.

He warned MPs of an “emerging view” that the two-year time period for finalising Brexit after Article 50 is triggered may not be long enough to reach a “clear and firm end state”.

Giving evidence at the Treasury Select Committee, he said: “Having a longer period to manage the adjustment between where we are now as full members of the European Union and where we get to in the future as a result of the negotiations that we will be conducting would be generally helpful, would tend towards a smoother transition and would run less risks of disruption.

Stephen Kinnock, a Labour MP, agreed with Hammond’s comments and called the transitional deal “encouraging”.

He added: “There is a growing consensus that agreeing a new trading relationship between Britain and Europe may take much longer than the two years specified by Article 50.

“Not signing a transitional arrangement would mean punishing tariffs which would hit British businesses and raise prices in the shops.”

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