LONDON (Reuters) – Britain will have much more cash to spend on public providers than the disputed 350 million kilos every week Brexiteers promised after the nation leaves the European Union, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson mentioned in an interview printed on Tuesday.
The 350 million pound determine was a central and controversial a part of the pro-Leave marketing campaign’s “Take back control” message within the runup to the 2016 referendum. Last September government statisticians accused Johnson of misusing state information by repeating it.
Britain’s theoretical gross contribution to the EU in 2016 was 18.9 billion kilos — greater than 360 million per week — however this was routinely lowered to 13.9 billion kilos by a rebate association that has been in place since 1984.
The government obtained an additional four.four billion kilos again to spend totally on farm subsidies and infrastructure in poorer areas. Overall, Britain’s internet cost to the EU labored out at 181 million kilos every week.
Brexit opponents say Johnson and different pro-Leave campaigners intentionally misled the general public by saying 350 million kilos every week may very well be spent on the state-run National Health Service (NHS), a declare emblazoned on a marketing campaign bus, and it has grow to be symbolic of the divisions attributable to the referendum.
But within the Guardian interview Johnson mentioned the UK’s weekly gross contribution to the EU would rise to 438 million kilos by the point Britain left the bloc.
“There was an error on the side of the bus,” Johnson instructed the Guardian newspaper. “We grossly underestimated the sum over which we would be able to take back control. As and when the cash becomes available – and it won’t until we leave – the NHS should be at the very top of the list.”
Johnson has beforehand mentioned the 350 million pound determine referred to the gross funds to the EU, moderately than the web quantity. It additionally doesn’t take account of EU funds given on to different British our bodies reminiscent of universities.
In the final week, a lot of senior Brexit campaigners reminiscent of Nigel Farage, the previous head of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), steered there wanted to be one other referendum to reaffirm the 2016 results of 52-48 % in favour of leaving the EU.
They concern Prime Minister Theresa May’s strategy has led to the watering down of a number of of their calls for, together with the flexibility to cut back immigration and to reclaim sovereignty by leaving the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.
May has dominated out one other vote and Johnson additionally instructed the paper he didn’t assume there needs to be one other referendum.
“We’ve just had one, and I think it went pretty well but it was something that caused an awful lot of heartache and soul-searching, and everybody went through the wringer on it,” he mentioned. “I‘m not convinced that the public is absolutely gagging for another Brexit referendum.”
Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Hugh Lawson