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The European Union next month will demand that Britain pay a fixed percentage of its outstanding obligations the day it officially exits the bloc, Reuters reports.

EU chief executive Jean-Claude Juncker stated that the UK might have to pay its 27 allies some 60 billion euros when it departs. Some experts project that the up-front cost, before later refunds, could be nearly double that.

The UK has since called the request "preposterous."

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The financial settlement that the EU wants from London when it leaves in March 2019 sets no figure, and chief negotiator Michel Barnier has made clear it cannot be calculated until the end because it depends on the EU's spending.

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