With prospects of future trade with the EU still hanging in the balance, Britain is looking for partners further afield in a bid to boost exports after Brexit, UK media has reported.
Britain could possibly ditch the EU and join a Pacific trade group as European leaders are set to dig in their heels over the terms of Brexit trade negotiations, UK media has reported.
The move, meant to bolster exports after Brexit, could make Britain the first member of the flagship trade group to not border the Pacific Ocean or the South China Sea.
It could also breathe new vigor into the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) initiated by former US President Barack Obama, which was hard hit by Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the agreement last year.
In November, the 11 remaining TPP member states, including Australia, Mexico, Singapore Japan and Canada, agreed upon a follow-up deal, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which is expected to be signed early this year.
UK trade minister Greg Hands believe that the country could join the CPTPP even though the other countries negotiating the deal are thousands of miles away, The Sun wrote.
“With these kinds of plurilateral relationships, there doesn’t have to be any geographical restriction,” he said.
Although EU leaders have agreed to hold direct trade talks with Britain during the Brexit transition period, experts expect some squabbling along the way as each EU country wants different things from the trade talks which are scheduled to kick off in March.
Signed on November 11, 2017, in Da Nang, Vietnam, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) is a free trade agreement involving 11 countries in the Pacific region, including New Zealand, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
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