Johnson, who was hailed by the U.S. president as Britain’s Trump, has promised to strike a new divorce deal with the European Union and to energize the world’s fifth-largest economy after what he casts as the gloom of Theresa May’s premiership.
On entering Downing Street on Wednesday, Johnson set up a showdown with the EU by vowing to negotiate a new deal and threatening that, if the bloc refused, he would take Britain out on Oct. 31 without a deal to limit economic dislocation.
“Our mission is to deliver Brexit on the 31st of October for the purpose of uniting and re-energizing our great United Kingdom and making this country the greatest place on earth,” Johnson proclaimed.
He said Britain could be the most prosperous economy in Europe by 2050, a feat that would mean drawing far ahead of France and then overtaking Germany.
Johnson promised that British children and grandchildren “will be living longer, happier, healthier, wealthier lives”.
Johnson’s ascent has placed an avowed Brexiteer in charge of the British government for the first time since the 2016 EU Brexit referendum, which shocked the world and upset financial markets.
Sterling has lost more than 5% of its value since early May and recently touched a 27-month low against the dollar. It fell further on Johnson’s first day in office, trading at around $1.2450.
Trump has repeatedly praised Brexit and has advised the United Kingdom to “walk away” if the EU offers a poor deal. While he grew frustrated with May, Trump said this week he liked her successor.