UK on brink of US trade deal as White House and Downing St ‘will on’ negotiators

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The Foreign Secretary said talks with the US have been progressing well and vowed the multi-billion pound tie-up would provide a “huge opportunity” for jobs and businesses in the UK. The boost comes just days after the UK tied up a bumper trade agreement with Japan worth £15billion. And Boris Johnson said the UK-Japan deal will provide a springboard for Britain to be at the forefront of a renaissance in global trade.

Mr Raab, speaking alongside US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a visit to Washington on Wednesday , said the pair had made good “progress in our Free Trade Agreement negotiations” and discussed the importance of a clean, resilient economic recovery from COVID-19.

He said: “Like Mike we’re willing on the negotiators, I think there’s a huge opportunity for a win-win deal. We’re confident we can get there.”

Mr Pompeo dismissed claims the US will block any trade deal because of the Prime Minister’s plans to alter the Brexit withdrawal agreement with the EU.

Critics claim it will endanger the Good Friday Agreement.

But Mr Pompeo said: “We trust the United Kingdom. I am confident they will get this right.

“We have made clear the importance of the Good Friday Agreement.

“We know the complexities of the situation.

“We have done what we can to provide assistance where we can.

“In the end this will be a decision for the UK to make and I have great confidence that they will get this right.”

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The Government is in the process of negotiating a trade deal with the EU which will take effect when the transition period ends on December 31.

Other huge agreements are also in the pipeline with Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Addressing the Liaison Committee yesterday (Wed) the Prime Minister said he is confident Britain will thrive outside the EU.

“We had a fantastic presentation in Cabinet the other day from [International Trade Secretary] Liz Truss of the list of trade deals she is now able to do that weren’t open to this country before and that will open markets, stimulate trade, help citizens and consumers.

“We can be at the heart of a great cat’s cradle of deals across the world.

World trade has been in the doldrums for 20 years now and the UK can play a massive role in getting that going again.”

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