Johnson pledges to leave EU with "a better deal" in 99 days

The new UK Prime Minister has insisted the UK will leave the EU with a ‘new, better deal’ on ...
Michael Staines
Michael Staines

16.16 24 Jul 2019

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Johnson pledges to leave EU wi...

Johnson pledges to leave EU with "a better deal" in 99 days

Michael Staines
Michael Staines

16.16 24 Jul 2019

Share this article

The new UK Prime Minister has insisted the UK will leave the EU with a ‘new, better deal’ on October 31st.

The Queen of England officially asked Boris Johnson to form a new UK Government this afternoon.

Speaking outside 10 Downing Street less than half-an-hour later, Mr Johnson warned that the UK was leaving the EU in 99 days with, “no ifs or buts.”


“We are going to fulfil the repeated promises of Parliament to the people and come out of the EU on October 31st, no ifs or buts,” he said.

“And we will do a new deal; a better deal that will maximise the opportunities of Brexit while allowing us to develop a new and exciting partnership with the rest of Europe based on free trade and mutual support.

“I have every confidence that in 99 days, we will have cracked it.”


Addressing Ireland and the rest of the EU, he said he is convinced that a deal can be done without the backstop that ensures there will be no checks on the Irish border.

“In the end, Brexit was a fundamental decision by the British People that they wanted their laws made by people that they can elect and that they can remove from office,” he said.

“We must now respect that decision and create a new partnership with our European Friends – as warm, as close and as affectionate as possible.

“To our friends in Ireland and Brussels and throughout the EU, I am convinced we can do a deal without checks at the Irish border – because we refuse under any circumstances to have those checks – and yet without that anti-democratic backstop.

“And it is of course vital at the same that we prepare for the remote possibility that Brussels refuses any further to negotiate and we are forced to come out with no deal – not because we want that outcome – of course not but because it is only common sense to prepare.”

The EU has consistently said that it is willing to negotiate on plans for the future relationship with the UK in a bid to ensure the backstop never comes into force.

However, it has made it clear that the Withdrawal Agreement itself – including the backstop – is not up for re-negotiation.

Brexit bill

He repeated his threat to hold back the £39bn Brexit divorce bill from the EU in the event of a no deal scenario.

The UK has pledged to pay the money to the EU to finance the obligations undertaken by the bloc while it was still a member.

Mr Johnson said the money would be used as "extra lubrication" for the UK economy in the event of a no deal.

No deal

He said the UK would now begin negotiating free trade deals with foreign powers and set in motion plans to changes its tax rules and create free ports – the tax-free zones he plans to establish in the UK.

He also called on the UK to move forward with plans for its own GPS space satellite system.

“All this and more we can do now and only now at this extraordinary moment in our history,” he said.

“After three years of unfounded self doubt, it is time to change the record. To recover our natural and historic role as an enterprising, outward-looking and truly global Britain – generous in temper and engaged with the world.

“No-one on the last few centuries has succeeded in betting against the pluck and nerve and ambition of this country.

“They will not succeed today.”

The UK is not allowed to negotiate trade deals while still a member of the EU.

EU response

The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has tweeted to congratulate Mr Johnson on his victory, noting that he looks forward to “early engagement on Brexit, Northern Ireland and bilateral relations” between Ireland and the UK.

The chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier said the EU was looking forward to working constructively with the new UK leader, “to facilitate the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement and achieve an orderly Brexit.”

He confirmed that the EU is willing to rework the political declaration on the future partnership between the EU and the UK.

The European Council President Donald Tusk said he looks forward to meeting Mr Johnson to discuss his Breixt plans, “in detail.”

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