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‘UK could exit EU without paying up if there’s no deal’

world Updated: Mar 12, 2017 18:13 IST
HT Correspondent
UK Brexit

A Union flag flies near the The Elizabeth Tower, commonly known Big Ben, and the Houses of Parliament in London.(AFP File)

Britain could exit the European Union without paying anything if there is no post-Brexit deal, the cross-party House of Lords EU Financial Affairs Committeee said on Saturday.

There have been reports that the EU may demand a ‘divorce bill’ of nearly £ 52 billion.

The committee warned that failure to reach any kind of financial terms would undermine Prime Minister Theresa May’s aim of securing continued access to EU markets.

It said talk of billions in pounds in liabilities was “hugely speculative” and there was a case that there may be no upfront cost to leaving.

It said: “Although there are competing interpretations, we conclude that if agreement is not reached, all EU law - including provisions concerning ongoing financial contributions and machinery for adjudication - will cease to apply, and the UK would be subject to no enforceable obligation to make any financial contribution at all”.