The Latest: Britain on course for female prime minister

LONDON – The Latest on Britain’s vote to leave the European Union (all times local):

4:25 p.m.

Conservative lawmakers have chosen Home Secretary Theresa May and Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom to fight a runoff contest for leadership of Britain’s governing party. The winner will become the country’s second female prime minister.

May received 199 votes in a ballot of Conservative members of Parliament Thursday. Leadsom received 84. Justice Secretary Michael Gove got 46 votes and was eliminated from the race.

Some 150,000 Conservative Party members will now vote in the leadership contest, with the result announced Sept. 9.

The winner will replace Prime Minister David Cameron, who announced his resignation after Britain voted last month to leave the European Union.

Britain’s first female prime minister was Margaret Thatcher, a Conservative who governed from 1979 to 1990.


3:35 p.m.

World athletics chief Sebastian Coe says Britain’s vote to leave the European Union means that British sports will lose a lot of EU funding for sports infrastructure. Coe says he will be pressing the next British government to make sure that money for sports still flows from national coffers.

Coe says he “will be at the front of the queue making sure that where that finance is available, it is being aimed at sport, which is as important to me as almost any other activity.”

The former Olympic runner was a Conservative member of parliament in the 1990s and a chief of staff of the party. He backed the “remain” side in the vote on EU membership.

Coe says when the EU divorce is final, EU sports funding will disappear in Britain.


1:15 p.m.

Britain’s Treasury chief and senior figures in five international banks are pledging to work together to ease concerns in an economy jittery after the vote to leave the European Union.

George Osborne met with top officials from Goldman Sachs, Standard Chartered, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Bank of America Merrill Lynch,

In a joint statement Thursday, the group stressed the need to join forces to “help London retain its position as the leading international financial centre.”

It was the second time this week that Osborne met with senior officials in the banking sector, hoping to ensure confidence in markets rattled by the June 23 vote to leave the 28-nation bloc.

He met bank leaders from domestically based banks on Tuesday.


11:30 a.m.

Conservative lawmakers in Britain are voting to decide which two candidates will face a runoff to be the country’s next prime minister.

Members of Parliament are choosing among three legislators — Home Secretary Theresa May, Justice Secretary Michael Gove and Energy Minister Andrew Leadsom.

May had a big lead after a first round of voting on Tuesday that saw the field winnowed from five to three.

Results of the latest round will be announced late Thursday afternoon. The candidate with the fewest votes will be eliminated and the other two will campaign around the country to win votes from 150,000 party members.

The result will be announced Sept. 9. The winner will replace Prime Minister David Cameron, who announced his resignation after Britain voted last month to leave the European Union.


10:50 a.m.

A German business group is forecasting that Germany’s exports to Britain will slip 1 per cent this year and drop by 5 per cent in 2017 following British voters’ decision to leave the European Union.

The Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry said Thursday that it previously predicted a 5 per cent increase in exports to Britain this year but revised its assessment because of the pound’s fall and the prospect of weakening investment. Britain was the no. 3 destination last year for German exports, taking goods worth 89.3 billion euros ($98.8 billion).

The group said most businesses expect bilateral trade to remain constant during negotiations on a British exit but many expect it to fall once Britain has left the EU, with extra bureaucracy and legal differences a concern.