The UK/US Free Trade Agreement – An Essential Deliverable in 2021

Mark Sutherland and The Princess Royal in 2019

Throughout 2020, the UK and the US engaged in a series of intense meetings to discuss what our friendship looks like going forward. Now that the UK has exited the European Union, while still staying connected and involved with the European continent, we have the opportunity in front of us to craft an economic relationship that shows the world how it should be done.

The UK’s analysis shows that an ambitious FTA could increase GDP in the US by $10 billion, and the UK would be the largest economy with which the US has ever signed a comprehensive bilateral free trade agreement. This is a deal for Main Street and the High Street, with SMEs on both sides of the Atlantic set to gain the biggest opportunities, whilst ensuring all our consumers can access a wider range of affordable products.

The current numbers are also clear – the UK and the US are an integral part of each other’s economies. We are each other’s biggest investors and over one million jobs in both countries are supported by this relationship. A formalised trade agreement is not just common sense, it is economic sense and we should realise the opportunity as soon as we can.

Strong progress has been made since the US and the UK began negotiations in May 2020, and both sides seem to be confident that we can reach a comprehensive agreement which would provide a significant and mutual benefit to our economies and advance mutual priorities.

Today, it is reported that the development of the FTA is well advanced. The UK and the US have agreed most of the text in most of the chapters and have closed an ambitious SME chapter. Our countries are in a position to move rapidly to a conclusion that will give both of our economies a much-needed shot in the arm. Yes, there are areas of ongoing discussion, as is common in all trade negotiations. But both negotiation teams are clear there is a deal to be done.

And that deal will be one that is good for the UK, good for the US, good for Missouri, and an example to the world of how international partnerships and trade between nations can create a better future for all.

Let’s get this done!