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The Prime Minister sent a video message to his Australian counterpart to congratulate him on his victory, taking the opportunity to cheer with him to a future post-Brexit free trade agreement between the two nations. Boris Johnson: “It gives me great pleasure to congratulate my friend Scott Morrison on winning the Policy Exchange Grotius Prize, and goodness gracious me you might say!
“All the historical rivalry between our two countries, whether between the fans of Larwood or Bradman or Jonny Wilkinson versus the 2003 squad, the hysterical partisans of Marmite or Vegemite, there is a huge amount that unites us and we do together.
“And it’s fantastic to work with Scott in sticking up for things that both the UK and Australia believe in together and believe in passionately.
“Our common security, our principles, our belief in democracy, in fundamental freedoms and the rules-based international system.
“Of course, there is also the small matter of free trade and I’m delighted that we’re doing a deal.
“I hope that we’ll be able to conclude a deal that will see finally the people of Britain able to access the supplies of Tim Tam chocolate biscuits in the quantities that we need, and the people of Australia will be able to get Penguins in exchange.
“Here’s to you Scott. Well done! Many congratulations on your prize.
“And here’s to the UK-Australia free trade deal!”
Last week, former Australian Prime Minister and adviser to the UK’s Board of Trade Tony Abbott said the UK was on course to sign a free trade deal with Australia before Christmas.
Addressing the International Trade Committee on Wednesday, the former Australian Prime Minister said both sides of the negotiations are “eager” to sign a deal before the end of the year.
A trade agreement that, he claimed, will see no tariffs, no quotas and “as free as possible movement of people” between the two Commonwealth nations post-Brexit.
He said: “Our job is to try to get the best possible deals as quickly as we can with Australia, Canada and the United States.
“I know that on both sides there is an eagerness to try and get the Australian deal done before Christmas.
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“And I hope that in the next negotiating sessions both sides are prepared to put all their cards on the table so that the best possible deal can be hammered out.
“Ideally, a deal between Britain and Australia would involve no tariffs, no quotas, as full as possible mutual recognition of standards and qualifications and as free as possible movement of people for well-paid work.
“That’s got to be the objective in any negotiations between two like-minded countries on standards of living.
“And currently, given the history between Britain and Australia and the complementarity of their economies, a deal of such ready economic integration should be more possible with us than almost anyone else.”
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