The Latest: Britain denies agreeing to pay EU exit bill
Aug. 07, 2017
BERLIN (AP) — The Latest on Brexit (all times local):
The British government denies it has agreed the amount of its European Union exit bill, after a report that it plans offer 36 billion pounds ($47 billion).
Britain's outstanding tab to settle commitments it made as an EU member is one of the biggest issues confronting the divorce talks. The EU says it won't discuss future trade relations with Britain until there is progress on the bill and other key issues.
The Sunday Telegraph reported that British officials have decided to offer 36 billion pounds, or 40 billion euros, in a bid to move talks on.
Prime Minister Theresa May's spokesman, James Slack, said Monday that Britain was prepared to pay a "fair settlement" of its obligations. But, he added, "in terms of this figure, I don't recognize it."
The European Union's budget commissioner says Britain will need to make payments into long-term projects even after Brexit.
Guenther Oettinger told Germany's Bild newspaper in remarks published Monday that Britain would remain "bound" by some previous commitments.
He says "London will therefore have to transfer funds to Brussels at least until 2020."
Britain voted last year to quit the 28-nation bloc and is due to formally leave in March 2019.
Oettinger said in the long term, Britain's withdrawal will mean a loss of about 10 to 12 billion euros ($11.8-14 billion) per year to the EU budget, which will be made up through a combination of cuts and higher payments from other members.
He estimated Germany would face an "additional single-digit billion" increase.