In a no deal scenario, tariffs and other market access barriers would arise all over the world. That’s why the CBI is campaigning to ensure there is trade continuity, whatever the outcome of Brexit. We have been working with members and engaging with UK and foreign officials to address concerns around losing access to EU Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). UK businesses currently enjoy the benefits of around 40 trade deals, allowing preferential access to markets such as Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Canada and South Africa.
We are pleased to have been selected to join DIT’s new Expert Trade Advisory Group (ETAG) for Trade Agreement Continuity (TAC). The ETAGs are new formal engagement structures for government Ministers and officials to update business representatives on specific issues and receive intelligence. This will allow us to champion your interests and update on the progress of various trade negotiations. As the UK gains independence on trade policy, the ETAGs will play an increasingly important role.
The CBI's key messages to the board
Aside from raising awareness of the importance of trade continuity with UK officials, we are leveraging our network worldwide. We have met with senior Japanese and Canadian officials recently, as well as a series of meetings with third country representatives in Brussels.
In September, CBI colleagues from London and the US will travel to Mexico to meet influential figures in their government to highlight the mutual benefit of rolling over the EU-Mexico trade agreement as soon as possible. The strength of CBI relationships globally is making a difference, particularly in understanding the position of third country trade partners as negotiations continue.
As a no deal Brexit becomes more likely, the issues that businesses may have to grapple with due to the loss of access to EU FTAs are becoming all the more pressing. At the CBI, we will continue to analyse potential problems, communicate these to members, and use our extensive international relationships to reduce the impact on UK business.
For more information, or to raise awareness of issues you may face as a business, please get in touch.
For a list of rollover deals secured by DIT, including with South Korea and Chile, click here.