Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

‘Significant risks and short-term disruption’ with no-deal Brexit, warns Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab

The Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab has warned of the “significant risks” of crashing out of the European Union without a deal, but said that without an agreement the UK will not pay its full divorce bill to the EU.

Asked by ITV News Political Editor Robert Peston about the likelihood of gridlock at UK ports, Mr Raab cautioned “there is no doubt there will be significant risks and short-term disruption.”

“We will cater and plan for all scenarios and in the worst-case scenario, there will be some short-term disruption.”

The Brexit secretary says no deal is “unlikely” but is “unable to put a percentage on it.”

“I'm confident that if the ambition and the pragmatism that we've shown is matched - and I think there's every indication that it can be, and it will be, we get a deal.

But I'm not going to start - I'm not a gambling man, I'm not going to start putting odds on it.”

Dominic Raab is due to meet with the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier on Friday. Credit: PA

His comments come as the Government released another round of technical papers on the impact of a no-deal. The latest batch includes advice to businesses and consumer on mobile roaming charges, driving licenses and passports.

Asked if he could name “a single EU leader or a member of your own backbenches who positively likes the Chequers plan”, Mr Raab was unable to name a Conservative MP, replying that “the Polish foreign minister, the Danish finance minister… Angela Merkel welcomed the Chequers proposals when they originally came out.”

Passports and mobile phone roaming charges were included in the latest tranche of technical papers. Credit: PA

As part of any deal, there is a financial settlement £39 billion agreed between Britain and the EU.

Mr Raab said in the event of a no-deal Brexit “obviously we wouldn't pay up the financial settlement.”

“You wouldn't in the aftermath of a no-deal scenario to allow the other side to cherry-pick the bits of the negotiation that went well for them.”

Pushed on reports his approach to talks on Northern Ireland had been seen as “aggressive” by EU officials, the Brexit Secretary said would be “unprofessional” to reveal the what is discussed during the negotiations.

When asked how May should handle the current political landscape, Tory MP George Freeman said she would need to start thinking about handing "the baton to a new generation leader."

  • Watch George Freeman give his verdict on Theresa May's leadership

Speaking at an event hosted by The Times, he said the Prime Minister had inherited "carnage" and that she has "done her very best."

He added: "We should allow her this winter to see through her promise she made to the British people and take us to the gateway.

"But I think hand the baton of future design of our relationship with Europe to a new generation leader."