Brexit secretary David Davis today said that the UK is ready for "any outcome" from the EU negotiations.
There has been an ongoing debate within the Conservative party about whether Britain should threaten to walk away from talks with Commission negotiator Michel Barnier.
Speaking at the party's conference in Manchester, Davis said Whitehall was drawing up a range of plans, not because walking away without a deal was a sensible move, but because the UK must be prepared.
He also said he would "welcome" amendments to the government's EU withdrawal bill, which will transpose EU law on to the UK statute books.
Labour MPs are seeking to amend the bill because they fear it hands too much power to the executive, allowing government to edit legislation without consulting Parliament.
However, Davis warned: "We will not allow it to be wrecked."
Josh Hardie, deputy director general of the Confederation of British Industry, said it was "critical" for the UK to finish talks on the transitional arrangements and start negotiations on the final deal.
"There is no time to waste: the impact on investment and jobs across the UK and Europe grows day by day," he said. "Both sides must show leadership and determination to make sufficient progress on the issues of citizens’ rights, the exit bill and Northern Ireland to move the process on.”