UK begins talks on joining Trans-Pacific Trade Pact

LONDON, Sept.28 (Reuters) – Britain will begin talks with the 11-member Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) on Tuesday to join the pact it sees as an important part of its future trade plans post-Brexit.

The CPTPP trade pact removes 95% of tariffs between its members: Japan, Canada, Australia, Vietnam, New Zealand, Singapore, Mexico, Peru, Brunei, Chile and Malaysia.

Britain hopes to carve out a niche in world trade as an exporter of high-end consumer goods and professional services. Joining the pact would complement trade deals London is seeking, or has already concluded, with larger members.

Other members of the pact have already met to discuss the British candidacy, but Tuesday’s virtual meeting will see British participation in the CPTPP British Membership Working Group, chaired by Japan, for the first time.

“This is an important step on our way to join the CPTPP, which will allow us to forge stronger bonds with both old friends and some of the fastest growing economies in the world,” the secretary said. to International Trade Anne-Marie Trevelyan in a press release.

Joining the CPTPP in its current format could add around £ 1.8bn ($ 2.5bn) to the UK economy in the long run – or less than 0.1% of gross domestic product before the pandemic, according to the pandemic. UK government modeling.

Although it represents only a minimal gain for exports and economic growth, it blocks market access, including for the legal, financial and professional services sectors, and is seen by ministers as an important means to gain influence in a region where China is increasingly the main force. (Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Aurora Ellis)

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