LONDON – The British pound has dropped close to 0.5% during afternoon trading on Friday as investors digest the words of Prime Minister Theresa May as she delivers her key Brexit speech in the Italian city of Florence.
Britain will continue to pay tens of billions of pounds to the EU for years after Brexit, May confirmed.
The prime minister said that the UK is open to a “time-limited” transition period which could mean Britain continuing to pay into EU budgets until at least 2021.
The PM did not state a specific figure in her speech but has reportedly opened the door to Britain paying between €20-40bn to the EU after it leaves in 2019, in a commitment that is already angering Brexit-supporting Conservative MPs.
May also said that Britain will not look for an “off the shelf” deal with the EU similar to that of Norway or Canada, but instead look for a bespoke deal.
The market has not reacted well to May’s words, with sterling pulling back sharply. Here is the chart showing sterling’s day as of 3.17 p.m. BST, just after May finished speaking:
- Markets Insider