Trade Knowledge Exchange > Trade Partnerships > UK Partnerships with Non EU Countries

UK Partnerships with Non EU Countries

Around 55% of the UK’s merchandise exports go outside the EU.  The figure is higher for services: around 60-65%.  Once the UK leaves the EU, it is likely that it will be able to define its own trade policy vis a vis the rest of the world. So what are the issues?

At present, trade relationships between the UK and the rest of the world are managed through the EU’s common commercial policy. The policy has defined the UK’s trade regime vis a vis the rest of the world, through WTO commitments, through regional agreements conclude by the EU, and through unilateral preference schemes implemented by the EU.

On leaving the EU, the UK will exit the EU’s common commercial policy. It will then face a number of choices and challenges. In particular:

  • How will it finalise its position at the WTO by extricating its commitments for the EU, particularly in areas such as agriculture subsidies and tariff-rate quotas, and in aspects of services trade?
  • Should it continue to apply MFN tariffs it has inherited from the EU, or should it liberalise further? If so, should it do so unilaterally, on a non-discriminatory basis, or reciprocally, through free trade agreements?
  • On services, where the UK, like many others, applies significantly lower levels of restrictions than are reflected in its WTO commitments, similar questions apply.
  • What should the UK’s approach to trade preferences be?
  • How should it establish priorities given limits to institutional capacity

These issues are not solely the UK’s. The EU itself will need to finalise its new schedules of commitments at the WTO. More broadly, the EU will also need to define its approach to trade policy, and this without the input of one its strongest liberalising influences.

The articles in this section assess these issues from a variety of perspectives, and provide a starting point for developing a new template for the UK’s trade policy.

International trade in goods, Trade services, Professional services brexit, brexit professional services, brexit network, trade expertise, trade expertise network, Trade knowledge, trade knowedge exchange, trade compliance, trade tools, barriers to international trade, effects of tariffs, brexit trade, brexit trade deals, post brexit trade deals, post-brexit trade deals, brexit trade, brexit trade deals, trade after brexit, brexit trade agreements, brexit analysis, trade analysis,

Filter:

Commentary

An enhanced UK-Switzerland FTA: what are the main issues?

    The UK and Switzerland jointly announced that they would begin exploratory work this year on negotiating a “modernised and enhanced” Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The two countries also announced that they would try and conclude a mutual recognition agreement on financial services by the end of 2023. We consider some of the issues. Some quirky […]

    Read more

    Commentary

    The Japan-UK Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) -running to stand still or stepping stone?

      The UK took a first step in its post-Brexit Free Trade Agreement (FTA) agenda by signing the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) on 23rd October. The UK government immediately proclaimed the deal ‘a historic Free Trade Agreement’. Although a detailed analysis will have to be carried based on the newly released legal text, we […]

      Read more

      Commentary

      A tricky triangle: the UK’s negotiation positions for FTAs with the US and the EU

        The UK has published, in quick succession, its negotiating position for free trade agreements with, respectively, the European Union and the United States. It is an ambitious project. Few countries have attempted parallel bilateral negotiations with both the US and the EU simultaneously. Substantial differences between these two parties, especially on key issues of regulation, […]

        Read more

        Commentary

        The elusive notion of “a level playing field”

          International trade in goods, Trade services, Professional services brexit, brexit professional services, brexit network, trade expertise, trade expertise network, Trade knowledge, trade knowedge exchange, trade compliance, trade tools, barriers to international trade, effects of tariffs, brexit trade, brexit trade deals, post brexit trade deals, post-brexit trade deals, brexit trade, brexit trade deals, trade after brexit, brexit trade agreements, brexit analysis, trade analysis,

          “Level playing-field” has become one of the most commonly used phrases in international trade. It has been used for example, between the United States and China in their current series of trade disputes.   It crops up regularly between the United Kingdom and the European Union in the context of negotiating a long-term economic and trade […]

          Read more

          Commentary

          Doing free trade agreements as if policy really matters

            At the World Economic Forum meetings in Davos,  US Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Mnuchin expressed his optimism that a UK-US free trade agreement could be signed by the end of 2020. Noting that the UK was also negotiating with the EU, he said he was a little bit disappointed that US had not been […]

            Read more