By Paul Vieira
OTTAWA – The UK and Canada have said the countries have agreed to an interim pact to cover trade once Britain is no longer part of an EU-Canada trade treaty, from January 1st.
The two countries said on Saturday officials would work on a more comprehensive deal, with negotiations due to begin within a year of the interim pact being ratified by respective legislatures. The Interim Trade Pact extends duty-free access for most products, as available under the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, or CETA, which was officially signed at the end of 2016.
“The deal we negotiated ensures certainty for British and Canadian businesses, preserving tens of thousands of jobs,” Elizabeth Truss, Britain’s Secretary of State for International Trade, said in a video-conference statement at of a Canadian government press conference.
Mary Ng, Minister of Commerce for Canada, said a new UK-Canada deal would build on CETA and focus on other elements such as environment, women and industry small businesses.
The United Kingdom is Canada’s largest trading partner in Europe, with two-way merchandise trade reaching C $ 29.04 billion, or the equivalent of $ 22.22 billion, in 2019.
After January 1, the UK will no longer be part of the EU’s single market and therefore will no longer be committed to the free movement of goods, services, capital and labor. The two parties are negotiating on their future relationship, to cover, among other things, trade and security matters.
The UK also began negotiations with the US in May on a trade pact.
Write to Paul Vieira at [email protected]
(END) Dow Jones News Wire