Friday 9 December 2016

Eurozone's gearing up for Brexit - Schaeuble

Rainer Buergin

Published 11/06/2016 | 02:30

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble

German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said officials in the euro area are preparing for the possibility of Britain voting to leave the EU.

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As polls suggest the outcome of the June 23 referendum is too close to call, plans for a post-Brexit Europe include the possibility of other countries following Britain out of the 28-nation bloc if Prime Minister David Cameron loses his campaign to stay, Mr Schaeuble told 'Der Spiegel' yesterday.

Planning is being carried out "for all possible scenarios in order to contain the dangers".

Mr Schaeuble said the UK would not be able to enjoy the benefits of the single market without adhering to its rules.

Britain would "have to follow the rules of a club which it just left", he said. Brexit would hurt the UK economy, while Europe will work without the UK "if necessary", he added.

The comments were published the morning after former London Mayor Boris Johnson, a leading Brexit advocate, came under attack from fellow Tory Amber Rudd in an ITV debate.

"You need to look at the numbers," Mr Rudd said in response to a question about immigration. "Although I fear the only number that Boris is interested in is the one that says No 10," she said.

It was the latest in a series of personal attacks, underscoring how alarmed the prime minister's team are by the "Leave" campaign's continued support in the polls. (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

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