Britain’s International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss, on Wednesday praised the decision to join Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), describing membership as a “huge opportunity for the UK".
After Britain withdrew from the European Union and the EU’s Single Market area, London has been on a mission to establish new economic ties with partners around the world. Joining CPTPP is one of the steps to secure economic ties with countries which are outside the EU.
— Liz Truss (@trussliz) June 2, 2021
“CPTTP membership is a huge opportunity for Britain. It will help shift our economic centre of gravity away from Europe towards faster-growing parts of the world, and deepen our access to massive consumer markets in the Asia-Pacific. We would get all the benefits of joining a high-standards free trade area, without having to cede control of our borders, money or laws,” Truss said on Wednesday.
CPTPP is a trade agreement involving 11 countries - Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam – which accounted for £110 billion of UK trade in 2019.
Although the latest UK-EU agreement provides for zero tariffs and zero quotas on all trade in goods originating in the EU or the UK, it doesn’t cover goods that have not come from the EU or UK.
Meanwhile, CPTPP’s rules remove tariffs on 95 percent of goods traded between members.
The news, welcomed by the government, received less praise online, with social media users commenting on Truss’s Twitter post.
— WinstanN68 (@N68Winstan) June 2, 2021
— paul giles (@PGSW14) June 2, 2021
— pista (@Pistabacsi) June 2, 2021
— Shadow Cat (@ShadowC03824926) June 2, 2021
The UK wants to accede to the bloc quickly and plans to work closely with Japan, which is chairing the partnership this year.