The UK government has said it will make the most of Brexit to “further boost investment” in the country’s economy, despite concerns over its trade links with Europe.
The UK economy grew by 3.2% last year and is expected to add nearly 1.2 million jobs.
But in a speech to the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham on Thursday, Philip Hammond said the country would have to find “new ways to make the UK a stronger and more prosperous place”.
“The UK is a global economic power,” he said.
“And in order to protect the UK’s competitive position, it will be necessary to use our considerable economic leverage and expertise to further boost investment in our country.”
The UK will be leaving the European Union by the end of March 2019.
But Mr Hammond said he had “no doubt” it would still remain a key part of the UK economy after the UK leaves.
“We will be an important and significant trading partner for the rest of the world,” he told the Tory conference.
“As we leave the European Economic Area, we will not be bound by the same rules, and we will continue to be a strong and successful trading partner.”
The government has promised to “provide a fair deal” for the UK, but it has not yet said what it will do if there is a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic.
Mr Hammond also confirmed plans to build an airport at Heathrow, despite his warnings that it would not be possible to build the facility in time for Brexit.
He said: “The next few months will be critical in ensuring we can complete the airport in the best possible way and deliver the benefits of this airport to the UK as quickly as possible.”