March 29, 2018 / 12:09 PM / a year ago

May commits to spend more on healthcare after Brexit

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May meets a local parent and toddler group at St Andrew's Heddon-on-the-Wall, CofE Primary School in Newcastle, March 29, 2018. Stefan Rousseau/Pool via Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Thursday that leaving the European Union will mean more money will be available to spend on healthcare, delivering on a central promise made by campaigners to leave the bloc.

Brexit supporters said during the campaign for the 2016 referendum on leaving the European Union that Britain pays 350 million pounds a week to the bloc and promised to spend the money on the National Health Service (NHS) instead.

“There is going to be money that otherwise we would have been sending to the European Union,” May told the BBC in an interview, a year to the day before Britain ends its 46 years of membership.

“So there will be money available here in the UK for us to spend on our priorities. Priorities like the NHS and schools.”

May, who voted to remain in the EU in the referendum, refused to say if she thought Brexit was worth it after embarking on what many consider to be the most complicated negotiations in post-World War Two European history.

“Brexit is going to deliver a country that will be different,” she said. “But I think there are real opportunities for us as an independent nation for the future.”

Reporting By Andrew MacAskill; editing by Stephen Addison

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