UK will retain access to the EU single market, says Brexit leader Boris Johnson

Former London Mayor and "Vote Leave" campaigner Boris Johnson attends a press conference in central London on June 24, 2016.
Former London Mayor and "Vote Leave" campaigner Boris Johnson attends a press conference in central London on June 24, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will continue to have access to the European Union's single market despite voting to leave the bloc, leading Brexit campaigner and favourite to become the country's next prime minister Boris Johnson said in a newspaper article on Sunday (June 26).

Mr Johnson said Britain could now forge a relationship with the EU based on free trade and partnership rather than a federal system, and that Britain would also be able to do free trade deals with growth economies outside the EU.

"There will continue to be free trade, and access to the single market," Mr Johnson wrote in a regular column for the Daily Telegraph newspaper, adding that there was "no great rush" for Britain to extricate itself from the EU.

 

He said Bank of England governor Mark Carney, who came under fire from some Brexit campaigners ahead of the referendum for flagging the risks of leaving the bloc, should continue in his job.

"The economy is in good hands," he said. "Most sensible people can see that Bank of England governor Mark Carney has done a superb job - and now that the referendum is over, he will be able to continue his work without being in the political firing-line."

He also said he did not detect "any real appetite" for another Scottish independence referendum, despite the country's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon saying it was highly likely if it is the best option to keep Scotland in the bloc.

Scotland, a nation of five million people, voted to stay in the EU by 62 to 38 per cent in Thursday's referendum, putting it at odds with the United Kingdom as a whole, which voted by 52 to 48 per cent in favour of an exit from the bloc, or Brexit.