The Prime Minister has said she won’t pay “huge sums” into the EU budget after Brexit, with Government legal advisors claiming there is no obligation for the UK to continue contributing to the bloc.
But German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble is set to put his anglophile sentiments aside and take Theresa May to the International court of Justice at the Hague, dragging Britain’s highest office to Europe’s highest court.
The leaked document claims Britain is “not only politically but also legally obliged to pay its debts” according to Article 70 of the Vienna treaty convention which outlines the rules surrounding the termination of treaties.
It adds: “Great Britain pays for its share — just like the other member states.”
Schäuble, an ardent anglophile, will reportedly drive a hard bargain over Brexit
The paper goes on to drive a hard bargain on the single market, saying Britain will have to provide a “financial contribution” to trade openly with the bloc.
It also reveals German fears a hard Brexit will cause a financial crash – which could have dire implications for the struggling Eurozone.
It comes after claims Philip Hammond will refuse to “recognise” the divorce bill put forward by the EU.
Sources close to the Chancellor claim Mr Hammond will ignore the massive payout, chiming in with the Prime Minister and Brexiteer-in-chief Boris Johnson, who claimed the bloc’s demands were unreasonable.
Theresa May's most powerful quotes Fri, March 10, 2017 Getty Images 1 of 8
'I will be ruthless in cutting out waste, streamlining structures and improving efficiency'
The Prime Minister has said she won’t pay 'huge sums' into the EU budget
The Chancellor accused Brussels of "overstating" its position ahead of the negotiations, which will begin after Theresa May invokes Article 50 on March 29.
A source close to Mr Hammond added: "We don't recognise the 60 billion euros.”
The Foreign Secretary has already publicly urged Mrs May to resist a large payment, while International Trade Secretary Liam Fox dismissed the idea as "absurd".
As the EU's biggest contributor, Germany is concerned over the risks of a financial crash
Theresa May is set to demand any payments include a £9billion refund
And Theresa May is set to demand any payments include a £9billion refund for British money paid into the EU’s coffers.
The Tory leader is expected to remind Eurocrats Britain is owed the money, currently being held by the European Investment Bank, after the triggering of Article 50.
The bill is likely to be dented by the British-owned cash currently caught up in the Brussels bureaucracy.