By Tony Winterburn • 11 September 2020 • 11:36
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.
Brexit history has just been made as the UK agreed on an €18bn (£15.2bn) trade deal with Japan.
Officials in London and Tokyo have now both confirmed the historic agreement has been signed. Liz Truss, the UK trade minister, held a video conference with her Japanese counterpart Toshimitsu Motegi this morning. The Department for International Trade confirmed the UK had signed its first post-Brexit trade deal on this morning.
The government estimates the agreement will boost trade with Japan by at least €18bn (£15.2bn) and means that UK businesses will be able to enjoy tariff-free trade on 99% of exports to the country.
Ms Truss said the deal “goes far beyond” the EU-Japan trade deal that the UK will leave at the end of this year when the transition period comes to an end. The minister also hailed the agreement as an “important step” towards the UK joining a wider 11-nation trade deal, known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Ms Truss took to Twitter to announce the deal had been reached and said it marked a big step for Britain’s future. She said: “Proud to have agreed on a historic UK-Japan trade deal with @moteging. This is a great deal for Britain, going beyond EU-Japan in key areas like digital & data, financial services and food & drink. “A British-shaped deal that delivers for the whole country.”
The deal with Tokyo comes at a welcome time for Prime Minister Boris Johnson as his move to unpick parts of the Brexit withdrawal treaty risks the collapse of trade talks with Brussels.
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