BIRMINGHAM, England (Reuters) - Britain will guarantee to cover any European Union funding secured ahead of the country's exit from the bloc, finance minister Philip Hammond said on Monday, extending an existing pledge to ease concerns that Brexit could hurt investment.
"The Treasury will offer a guarantee to bidders whose projects meet UK priorities and value for money criteria, that if they secure multi-year EU funding before we exit, we will guarantee those payments after Britain has left the EU," he said in a speech to the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham.
Hammond had previously pledged to guarantee the funding for projects signed prior to this year's Autumn Statement, due on Nov. 23. At that time, the commitment was worth around 4.5 billion pounds ($5.8 billion) in funding for agriculture, universities and some of the country's regions.
Reporting by William James, editing by Elizabeth Piper