Meaning of “cannot afford” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"cannot afford" in British English

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cannot afford

formal can ill afford

C2 If you cannot afford to do something, you must not do it because it would cause serious problems for you:

We can't afford to make any mistakes at this stage in the project.
He can ill afford to fail any of his exams.

(Definition of “cannot afford” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)