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The International Trade Secretary confirmed the UK is seeking to become a member of a major free-trade area of Pacific nations. She met with all 11 members of CPTPP (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership) for the first time on Wednesday to pave the way for Britain’s formal accession. Ms Truss said: “Joining CPTPP would send a powerful signal to the rest of the world that Britain is prepared to work with countries who champion free and fair trade.
“Membership would bring new opportunities for our go-getting businesses, more choice for our consumers, and provide us with greater economic security.
“Strategically, it would help us forge closer ties with the wider Pacific region and put us in a stronger position to reshape global trading rules alongside countries who share our values.”
The CPTPP also includes Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
Once fully operational it will account for around 14 percent of global GDP.
Since 2009 trade between the UK and CPTPP countries has grown on average by 6 percent every year and was worth over £112 billion in 2019.
Wilson Del Socorro, Global Director of Government Affairs at Diageo, said: “We welcome the UK’s ambition to join the CPTPP as part of its broader strategy to unlock international trade and investment opportunities for British business.
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“We are excited by the growth opportunities that this trade deal will help unlock over the long-term where tackling import tariffs and improving the broader regulatory environment are key priorities for a number of markets.”
Willian Santos, International Sales Manager at ABI Electronics, said: “We thoroughly support the UK government’s initiative to join CPTPP.
“For nearly 40 years, ABI products have been supporting businesses across the region. “From the textile industry in Peru and Aerospace in Malaysia to the toy manufacturer LEGO in Mexico and automotive conglomerates and Japan. In fact, it was from Malaysia that ABI’s first international order came from in 1986.
“Becoming part of CPTPP will certainly encourage other British manufacturers to follow ABI’s footsteps leading to a transformational export journey.”
The partnership includes ambitious agreements on digital trade, data, financial, professional, and business services, all of which are areas where the UK is a global leader and stands to benefit from more trade.
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