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£21bn of military spending at risk from Brexit

January 27, 2017 3:00 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

£21.2 billion of planned spending on military equipment the next 10 years is denominated in euros or pounds, the National Audit Office has warned, posing a "significant risk to affordability."

The analysis shows £18.6 billion of the Ministry of Defence's 10-year Defence Equipment Plan is denominated in US dollars and £2.6 billion in euros.

It warns that as of 10 January 2017, the pound was 21.4% below the exchange rate with the US dollar and 4.2% below the exchange rate for the euro used in the MOD's spending forecasts for the plan.

Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron commented: "Theresa May is betting £21 billion of taxpayers' money for vital defence equipment on a hard Brexit.

"The Prime Minister must now come clean: will her government spend more to fund our world-class armed forces or buy less equipment?

"It's clear a destructive, hard Brexit threatens not only people's economic livelihoods, but Britain's status as a leading power in the world.

"The Liberal Democrats will keep fighting to keep the UK in the Single Market and hold this Conservative Brexit government to account."