Britain to be EU's 'best friend' after tariff-free trade deal: Farage

Nigel Farage, leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) and Member of the European Parliament holds a British Union Jack flag as he waits for the start of a debate at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, June 8, 2016. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Britain will be the European Union’s “best friend” after the bloc strikes a deal to allow for tariff-free trade, Nigel Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party, told the European Parliament.

“Let’s cut between us a sensible tariff-free deal and thereafter recognize that the United Kingdom will be your friend (...) We will be your best friends in the world,” Farage said to booing from some members of parliament.

“If you were to cut off your noses to spite your faces and to reject any idea of a sensible trade deal the consequences would be far worse for you than it would be for us,” Farage added.

The German speaker of parliament, Martin Schulz, had to chide angry lawmakers and ask them to let Farage speak, accusing them of imitating tactics he said were normally used by UKIP.

Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; Editing by Alastair Macdonald