The new front-runner in France's presidential campaign favours a hard and fast Brexit

He wants the UK to lose its crucial financial passport...

The man who has emerged as the front-runner in France's presidential election, Francois Fillon, the former French prime minister wants Brexit to be hard and fast.

"Now the urgency is to regulate the British case. The divorce must be serene but it should be fast," he said at a speaking engagement days after the Brexit vote.

"We can not have left the town house, not pay more expenses, and benefit from the roof, room and board ... However, we can negotiate a good neighborhood agreement. And if they are seekers, and I hope, we must maintain and deepen defense agreement with Britain," he continued.

Supporters of former Prime minister and candidate for France's upcoming presidential primary election, Francois Fillon, applaud during a meeting in Paris / PA

Mr Fillon is also in favour of ensuring that the UK will not benefit from access to the EU's open market after it leaves.

"But there is no reason to give them European financial passport, and the eurozone must recover the clearing of its currency. In the process, we must reach out to the French settled in the UK and those who think they should be located within the European Union," he continued.

This 'passport' allows banks and asset managers to operate across the EU's member states without seeking regulatory approval in each individual state.

The politician called on all EU leaders to maintain pressure on the UK to pursue a speedy exit - and for this process to be completed by 2019.

He will take on initial front runner Alain Juppé is the race to become the centre-right’s presidential candidate after former-President Nicolas Sarkozy's shock elimination from the race after the first round of voting.

His hard-line views are not reserved for the UK - he is running on a platform of cutting 500,000 public sector jobs and extending France's working week.