In his first public address since the result of the EU Referendum, Chancellor George Osborne aimed to calm markets by stating that the UK is ready to confront the future “from a position of strength”.
Osborne said that the result of the referendum was “not the outcome that I wanted”, but stressed that authorities were “ready to deal with the consequences.”
“I said we had to fix the roof so we were prepared for whatever the future held and thank goodness we did.”
Osborne breaks silence after Brexit vote.
Regarding Article 50, Osborne said it should only be triggered once the UK has a “clear view” on the future.
“The prime minister has given us time as a country to decide what that relationship (with the EU) should be by delaying the decision to trigger the article 50 procedure until there’s a new prime minister in place in the autumn.
Only the UK can trigger Article 50. And in my judgement, we should only do that when there is a clear view about what new arrangements we are seeking with our European neighbours.
“In the meantime, during the negotiations that will follow, there will be no change to people’s rights to travel and work and to the way our goods and services are traded or to the way our economy and financial system is regulated.”
Osborne said he’s spent the past 72 hours in contact with central bank governors, the IMF, the US Treasury and major CEOs to “keep a close eye on developments”.
“We must bring unity of spirit and purpose and condemn hatred and division wherever we see it,” he said. “Britain is an open and tolerant country and I will fight with everything I have to keep it so.”
The Chancellor made it clear that despite campaigning for the UK to remain, he is not walking away from the Conservative party.
“There have been questions about the future of the Conservative Party and I will address my role within that in the coming days”, he said.