In an interview with German Welt am Sonntag newspaper, Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond said on Sunday that Britain could “change economic model” to stay “competitively engaged” after Brexit.
Hammond said if Britain is “closed off” without an agreement on market access after leaving the European Union, the country maybe forced to be “something different.”
“I personally hope we will be able to remain in the mainstream of European economic and social thinking. But if we are forced to be something different, then we will have to become something different.
“We could be forced to change our economic model and we will have to change our model to regain competitiveness. And you can be sure we will do whatever we have to do,” he said.
Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn reacted to Hammond’s remarks on BBC’s Andrew Marr Show on Sunday.
Corbyn slammed Hammond, saying that his comments sounded like “a recipe for some kind of trade war with Europe.”
“It seems to me an extremely risky strategy,” he said and added, “That really isn’t a very sensible way forward.”
This week Theresa May is expected to set out objectives for the negotiations in a speech on Tuesday.
British PM has been target of criticism for not spelling out the details of her Brexit strategy. May has repeated last week her commitment to trigger article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon, the formal mechanism for ending membership, before the end of March.