UK and Canada seal post-Brexit trade deal

UNITED KINGDOM: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the G7 summit in Biarritz, France on August 24, 2019. Stefan Rousseau / Pool via REUTERS reuters_tickers

This content was published on 21 November 2020 – 17:06

By Kate Holton and Amran Abocar

LONDON / TORONTO, Nov 21 (Reuters) – Britain and Canada reached an agreement on Saturday to renew their trade alliance to protect the flow of $ 27 billion worth of goods and services between the two countries after Brexit, and they pledged to start talks on a more specific deal next year.

As the UK continues preparations to finalize its transition out of the European Union on December 31, multiple bilateral renewal agreements have been negotiated to maintain trade, many of them simply replacing terms that the bloc itself had already agreed to. .

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson joined Canadian Justin Trudeau and their respective trade ministers in a telematics call to mark the deal, paving the way for a more specific pact covering more areas such as digital trade, small businesses, the environment and economic empowerment of women.

“Today’s deal supports £ 20bn trade and secures thousands of jobs,” said Liz Truss, the UK’s Secretary for International Trade, in a statement.

His Canadian counterpart, Mary Ng, said the transition agreement “largely replicates” the EU agreement on tariff cuts and provisions on labor and the environment.

“We want an ambitious and high-level trade deal with the UK,” Ng said, noting that Canada wanted similar terms to the EU deal.

The United Kingdom is Canada’s fifth largest trading partner, after the United States, China, Mexico and Japan.

Johnson is trying to shape a new “global UK” that can stand up on its own and negotiate better trade deals than the EU, as part of what he says are the benefits of his historic decision to leave the largest trading bloc. of the world.

In less than two years, it has signed trade deals with 53 countries, representing 164 billion pounds ($ 217.82 billion) of British bilateral trade. Critics of Johnson point out that many of them are largely the same as the EU deals.

The Trade Continuity Agreement between the United Kingdom and Canada will be subject to final legal checks before being formally signed. “This is a good time,” Trudeau said.

($ 1 = 0.7529 pounds)

(Edited by Mark Potter and Mike Harrison; translated by Andrea Ariet in Gdansk)

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