16:16 GMT17 May 2021
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    Former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott called for “absolutely free” trade deals between the UK and Australia.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — A decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union provides an opportunity for the country to engage in “absolutely free” trade deals with Australia and other countries of the Commonwealth of Nations, provided that London will no longer be constrained by “the statism and bureaucracy of Brussels,” former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said in a report, published on Tuesday.

    “If Britain is determined to make the most of Brexit – and everything about [UK] Prime Minister [Theresa] May shows this steely determination – why not strive for a one page FTA with Australia?,” Abbot said in a foreword for a report written by the UK Free Enterprise Group and Conservative party members James Cleverly and Tim Hewish.

    Abbott stressed that the movement of goods between the two countries “should be absolutely free of tariffs or quotas,” adding that trade agreements with “economically advanced Commonwealth countries” would be the right place for the United Kingdom to start.

    In June, the United Kingdom voted in a referendum to leave the European Union. Soon after the referendum, May said the country would trigger the Article 50 of the EU Lisbon Treaty by the end of March 2017, thus kick-starting withdrawal negotiations.


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