David Davis, the U.K.’s Brexit secretary, said London would not pay any money to the EU if no final trade deal is negotiated with the bloc.
“No deal means we won’t be paying the money,” Davis told the BBC’s Andrew Marr on Sunday, adding that the agreement reached last week in Brussels on the U.K.’s withdrawal was “a statement of intent” rather than “a legally enforceable thing.”
The U.K. estimates that the total Brexit bill it will pay over a period of years is €40 billion to €45 billion (£35 billion to £39 billion). The EU has never officially estimated a final figure but has concentrated instead on agreeing to a formula for future payments.
When asked what sort of trade agreement he hoped the U.K. could negotiate, Davis said: “Canada plus plus plus,” referring to the EU’s agreement with Ottawa.
Davis said he was confident there was time to negotiate the new deal, estimating that there was “about a year” left to do so, although he acknowledged it couldn’t be signed until the U.K. had actually left the EU.