Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable has said the Brexit bill will soar way above the £20bn that Theresa May is reportedly going to offer the EU27 in her Florence speech.

Vince Cable said:

“Be warned, the £20bn that Theresa May is reportedly about to offer as the biggest divorce settlement in history would simply be the down payment. Brexit will cost a lot, lot more than this.

“This government is being utterly reckless with the public finances by preparing to spend an absolute fortune simply to get out of Europe.

“This £20bn does not cover liabilities such as pensions and infrastructure projects already agreed to. Nor does it cover the cost of access to the single market. And nor does it cover the cost to the Exchequer in reduced tax receipts due to the slowdown in the economy.

“Conservative voices are attacking the likes of Philip Hammond for supposedly talking up the problems of Brexit. Well, there is a very simple solution – ministers could publish the fifty-plus impact studies into the cost of Brexit on different sectors of the economy. Then the public would be better placed to judge the real cost of Brexit, and they could decide for themselves in a referendum on the final deal.”

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