Eurocrats refused to be drawn on the size of the final bill which will be presented to Theresa May, which could be as high as £60 billion, but made clear the UK will not be allowed to go without settling up.
EU Commission chief spokesman Margaritis Schinas told journalists individual member states are all making “calculations” about how much money they reckon Britain will owe them by the time Brexit comes around.
Theresa May has been told she will have to cough up for Brexit
And he said that any spending commitments involving UK money that the EU announces between now and spring 2019 will have to be honoured in full even if their results will not benefit British citizens.
The Greek eurocrat was asked about reports that Brussels is preparing a monster £60bn bill for Britain as part of its negotiating strategy for the upcoming divorce talks.
EU Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas compared Britain to someone trying to skip a round
He said the UK cannot leave without paying for its commitments
He confirmed that the UK’s outstanding spending commitments would be an “essential element of the negotiations” and urged UK taxpayers to cough up without complaining.
He said: “Of course it is no surprise that budget experts in the Commission and other EU member states are making calculations in light of the UK referendum result.
“During the time of its membership the UK has taken and probably will take financial commitments and these commitments should be honoured in full.
“This will be an essential element of the negotiations on orderly separation.”
You can not leave while the party continues as you still need to pay for the round you ordered
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EU Commission spokesman
Comparing Britain’s decision to leave the club to someone trying to duck out of the pub early, he added: “As all commitments are taken jointly by the member states, if they are not paid for by the UK the other 27 member states will have to foot the bill.
“It’s like going to the pub with 27 friends. You order a round of beer, but then you can not leave while the party continues as you still need to pay for the round you ordered.
“If you’re in a round and you leave before you pay yours, you’re obviously dumping the onus on others. That’s how being in a round works. It’s part of what one calls an orderly separation.”
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Mr Schinas insisted that any bill presented to Britain would be “based on objective and verifiable data” and would not be designed to punish the UK for its decision to leave.
His remarks come after the Polish leader announced that he will pursue a pact against EU states that are attempting to make Britain pay for June’s EU referendum vote.
Jaroslaw Kaczyński, the leader of the ruling Law and Justice party, railed against attempts by countries like France to punish the UK and insisted any Brexit settlement should be based on common sense and not emotions.