And the total contribution is going to be even higher for the next few years – even after we leave the EU.

The UK coughed up £8.8billion to the bloc's budget for 2017/18, compared to £8.1 for 2016/17.

That includes the total amount of cash paid in, minus the billions we get back from subsidies and as part of a rebate – and works out at around £169million a week.

But finally leaving the EU next March isn't going to stop the billions we pay towards the bloc's long list of projects.

The stats show that we're on track to pay £10.8billion next year, and £12.2billion for the year 2020 as part of our divorce bill.

Stopping huge payments to Brussels was one of the main reasons 17million people opted to quit the EU in the first place.

Tory Brexiteer Andrew Bridgen told the Daily Mail: "This is another 700 million reasons why the British people were right to vote to leave the EU.

The Treasury's calculations don't take into account the cash we get back from the EU through funding from the European Commission – such as for research and university funding.

Theresa May has already promised the EU we will pay around £39billion as part of a divorce bill to quit the bloc, for our share of commitments while we were a member.

And as part of a transition period we will carry on making our full contributions to Brussels.

It was revealed last week that the EU will even dictate how much of the bill we pay every year too – and when they will collect the money.

But ministers have warned that we won't be paying a penny unless the EU keeps to their side of the bargain and offers us a trade deal.

Even after that our payments to the EU will continue for years to come.

And ministers have said there might be EU projects we want to continue to cough up for after we leave too, leaving the door open to even more cash being funnelled to the bloc forever.

Mrs May said in her Florence speech she wants to see Britain still pay for "science, education and culture" funds – and joint projects that "promote our mutual security".

 

 

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