MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) - Britain is getting ready for leaving the European Union without a deal by making contingency plans, but a so-called “no deal” is very unlikely, First Secretary of State Damian Green said on Wednesday.
Green, who is effectively Theresa May’s deputy, said that after the prime minister made her speech in Italy last month he was more confident of moving the negotiations on to their second phase, to tackle a future trade deal.
“First of all, of course we want there to be a deal and I am optimistic ... there is clearly a possibility that there will be no deal and Whitehall is making contingency plans for that ... I think that’s unlikely, very unlikely,” he told ITV television at the Conservative Party’s annual conference in Manchester.
Reporting by Elizabeth Piper; editing by Guy Faulconbridge