EU Economics

IDS insists EU are DESPERATE for money but Britain will NOT budge until trade talks begin

INFLUENTIAL Tory MP Iain Duncan Smith insisted the European Union are “desperate” for money but Britain should not put an amount on the table until it knows what kind of trade deal it will get.

Mr Duncan Smith said it is up to Brussels to push for a deal because Britain is not moving, and it is Brussels that is in the “weak position”.The comments follow former Tory leader William Hague’s warning on Monday that Britain must pay the EU if it wants a good Brexit deal.Mr Duncan Smith told Sky News that he “couldn’t disagree with William Hague more”, saying that Britain must not offer a lump sum until it knows what trade deal it will get.

The  has refused to move onto trade talks until “sufficient progress” is made on key Brexit issues – including the financial settlement, Irish border and citizens’ rights.

Brexit News EU Withdrawal Bill Iain Duncan Smith Getty•Sky News

Iain Duncan Smith said Britain should not pay for Brexit until it knows what type of deal it will get

Brussels’  negotiator Michel Barnier gave Britain a two-week deadline to clarify how much it is willing to pay before it leaves the bloc.Mr Duncan Smith insisted that making a financial settlement before knowing trade agreements is “not a feasible” request.The Tory MP referenced ’s olive branch speech in Florence, he said she made an offer on the financial settlement after having taken advice from the European negotiators that Britain needed to be more explicit about how it will be obligated to pay.

Mr Duncan Smith continued to hit out at the Brussels bloc, adding: “They’ve just simply said they want more money, and that is really what this is all about.

“I think it would be right for the Government not, at this point, to make any further offer on the table to them.”Mr Duncan Smith stressed that the border in  can’t be settled until a trade agreement is agreed, despite it being one of the key issues the EU wants clarity on before trade talks begin.He said: “The money can’t be settled until you know what the trade agreement will be. We said we’ll stand by our budgetary commitments but we’re not prepared to spell out the amount in any great detail until you start talking about trade.

“Until they move, we don’t get a deal. In negotiations, you stay put sometimes and wait for them to move.”

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