France and Germany have raised the stakes in Brexit negotiations.
The European Union is demanding €100 billion (£85 billion) as an upfront payment for the UK to leave the trading bloc, reports the Financial Times on its front-page splash. It says that following direct requests from several member states, the EU has revised its initial calculations to maximise the UK’s liabilities. The bill had previously been set at €60 billion. The paper says the sum represents one of the biggest early obstacles to a smooth Brexit. Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, is expected to unveil a draft negotiating mandate later today and is reported to seek agreement on a methodology for Brexit before commencing trade talks.