Brexit delay could cost Britain £1 billion a month if Theresa May can’t get deal

The EU is preparing to charge Britain more than £1 billion a month to delay Brexit , it has been claimed.

Theresa May could be forced to return to Brussels to ask for the UK’s exit to be pushed back, as she faces a series of crushing defeats in Westminster.

But the EU is said to be preparing to apply a number of “punitive” conditions to any delay, including an increase to the £39 billion ‘divorce payment’, according to the Daily Telegraph.

With negotiations at a standstill, MPs are expected to overwhelmingly reject Mrs May’s deal in a vote on Tuesday.

And diplomatic sources told the Telegraph EU leaders are “hardening against extension” of the Article 50 process.

They suggested the divorce payment could be increased by a staggering £13.5 billion a year.

“Anything more than a few weeks will come with legal and financial conditions attached,” the source said.

The source is quoted as having told Mrs May she needs to “summon her inner Churchill” and reach across the political divide for agreement on her deal.

Tory MP George Freeman said "I think we are in a very, very serious crisis" and Theresa May should quit after Brexit.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: "I hope the Prime Minister can get withdrawal through and then I do think we need to choose a new leader for a new generation with a new vision of a conservativism that can make sense of Brexit and reinspire and reunite the nation.

"I hope we can do that having secured a sensible Withdrawal Agreement. A panicked change of leader now will solve nothing, we have got to get this through.

"I hope colleagues this week will recognise that: vote for the deal and then we can change."

The former chairman of the Number 10 policy board said: "Brexit is a very big test for Parliament. The country sent a big message for change without being totally clear what that change was – it wants to leave the European Union, but I think it was a bigger vote."

Mr Freeman said if the Withdrawal Agreement was defeated, the UK should opt for a European Free Trade Association (Efta) relationship with the EU similar to Norway.

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