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UK announces €2.3bn for no-deal Brexit preparation

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By Lauren Chadwick  & Alice Tidey
UK announces €2.3bn for no-deal Brexit preparation
Copyright  REUTERS/Henry Nicholls/File Photo

UK Chancellor Sajid Javid announced on Wednesday that the government would double Brexit funding for this year to prepare for no deal.

The extra funding will be provided to departments immediately to ensure that the government "steps up vital operational preparations across the country," the government's statement said.

The money will be used for border and customs operations, medical supplies, public communications on Brexit, and support for UK nationals overseas.

The government said that £344 million (€377 million) would support 500 extra border force officers, boost capacity for UK passport applications and be used for other customs operations.

Another £434 million (€476 million) would be for "vital medicines and medical products".

The government said £108 million (€118 million) would be available to support businesses as they prepare for Brexit and £138 million (€151 million) would be available for an information campaign to help people prepare and to increase consular support.

Some of that money will also "support local areas, including Northern Ireland," as well as the other devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales.

"We want to get a good deal that abolishes the anti-democratic backstop. But if we can’t get a good deal, we’ll have to leave without one. This additional £2.1 billion will ensure we are ready to leave on 31 October - deal or no deal," Javid said in a statement released by the UK government.

This brings the UK government's total allocation for Brexit this year up to £6.3 billion (€6.9 billion).

John McDonnell, the finance chief from the Labour party described the spending as an "appalling waste of tax-payers' cash, all for the sake of Boris Johnson’s drive towards a totally avoidable no deal."

"This government could have ruled out no deal, and spent these billions on our schools, hospitals, and people," he added.

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