The Government expects to begin formal talks for Britain to leave the European Union by "the early part of next year", Boris Johnson has said.
The Foreign Secretary said ministers were working towards triggering Article 50 of the EU treaties - marking the official start of negotiations - in the first part of 2017.
Speaking in New York where he has been attending the United Nations, Mr Johnson suggested the discussions could be wrapped up before the two-year deadline.
"We are talking to our European friends and partners in the expectation that by the early part of next year you will see an Article 50 letter. We will invoke that," he told Sky News.
"In that letter I am sure we will be setting out some parameters for how we propose to take this forward.
"I don't think we will actually necessarily need to spend a full two years but let's see how we go."