Trans-Pacific Partnership: Expert discusses significance to UK
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Former trade negotiator for Australia and free trade expert Dmitry Grozoubinski told Sky News the benefit of accession to the bloc would be beneficial to the UK’s trading future following the breakdown of a potential free trade deal between the USA and UK as Prime Minister Boris Johnson failed to convince President Biden to sign the dotted line.
The expert was asked how easy it is for the UK to join an already formed trade deal with Canada, Mexico, and the USA.
He replied: “Some trade agreements like the CPTPP are designed with that process in mind.
“They have accession, the process of joining them, and a procedure to do that built right into the treaty.”
But he stressed how the USMCA (US, Mexico, Canada) agreement, however, does not have such a facility and therefore a host of legal obstacles stand in the way for the UK if they want to join in on such a deal.
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Mr Grozoubinski also warned how the bigger problem facing the UK in joining such a deal was that the USA, Canada, and Mexico’s reluctance at allowing the UK into the fold of North and South America-based nations agreement.
The trade expert was then asked about the possibility of the UK joining the 12-member Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The partnership bloc which includes nations such as Australia, the United States, Canada, and Malaysia and holds potential business opportunities for the UK.
He said this partnership can take on new members and that there would be some “marginal economic benefits” to the UK and its trade future if it joined up.
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The expert explained: “The UK has existing free trade agreements with most of the major players in the CPTPP already but joining that deal would make it easier to manufacture things in a number of places and pool resources.”
He stressed how joining TPP would also have significance well beyond trade and membership in the bloc would be important for the geopolitical positioning of the United Kingdom.
The trade expert highlighted an example of this is China as well as Taiwan’s demands to join the agreement within the last week.
Mr Grozoubinski suggested how if the UK were already a member, it could steer vitally important geopolitical decisions alongside the other members of the bloc such as the China decision currently underway.
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He was then asked why there is a reluctance from the Biden administration to open up new trade agreements with the UK.
The trade expert replied how President Biden is currently focusing his efforts on “reinvesting” in the USA’s own production and manufacturing and services and not to strike deals to make it easier for others to sell to Americans.
He added: “Even if those deals mean Americans get to sell more readily abroad.”
“While there are Northern Ireland elements and complicated milieu of issues, fundamentally the Biden administration is just not that interested in negotiating free trade agreements with anyone.”
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