Following reports that UK preparing to ‘increase’ Brexit bill offer
Prime Minister Theresa May will only detail how big a divorce settlement Britain is willing to pay the EU when the bloc gives a commitment to moving talks forward.
With Britain due to leave the EU in 2019, UK leaders are keen to start work on a free-trade deal with the bloc.
This development comes amid media reports that Britain is planning to offer more money to settle its bill with the European Union in a bid to break the deadlock in withdrawal negotiations, but only if the EU agrees to start discussing a future free-trade deal.
May clarified today: “We are ready to move onto phase two, to see those talks about a deep and special partnership with the EU for the future, a comprehensive trade agreement with the EU.”
“I think that’s in the interests of the UK and in the interests of the remaining EU 27. I think it’s also important that the UK and the EU step forward together,” she added, a turn of phrase a source said expressed her desire for coordination.
Acording to a report in The Independent, May had won the backing of key cabinet figures to almost double the amount being offered by the UK to settle its financial obligations in Brussels. This will be conditional on securing an acceptable transition deal and a good free trade agreement.
Britain has previously offered about $23bn, but the EU wants at least $70bn.
The 27 other EU leaders are due to decide at a December summit whether there has been sufficient progress on the divorce terms for talks to move on to future relations and trade.