Thank you for writing to me about UK-US trade deal negotiations. I have read your email carefully and noted the key points that you raise.
Whilst I appreciate your strength of feeling on this matter, the benefits of an ambitious and comprehensive UK-US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) are substantial. Aside from being the world’s largest economy, the US is the UK’s single largest trading partner. Total UK-US trade in the last year was valued at £220.9 billion, and our countries have over £700 billion invested in each other’s economies. Every day, over a million Brits and more than a million Americans work for companies from the other nation.
A long-run analysis by the Government shows that a UK-US FTA could boost trade between the UK and US by around £15.3 billion in comparison to 2018 and generate a £1.8 billion rise in UK workers’ wages.
A UK-US FTA could benefit all four nations of the UK and almost every sector. The agricultural sector would be a winner with lower input costs and a bigger export market. Moreover, the 30,000 Small and Medium Sized Enterprises who export to the US from all parts of the UK would benefit from the cutting of tariffs, trade barriers and red tape. Exports of Scottish salmon and Whisky, Welsh steel and lamb, machinery and furniture built in Northern Ireland, vehicles made in the Midlands, manufactured products from the North of England and financial services from London could all be boosted by a comprehensive FTA with the US.
I am reassured by my Ministerial colleagues’ commitment not to compromise the UK’s high animal welfare, environmental, food safety and food import standards in any future FTA, including one with the US. Ministers do not want to compromise the UK’s domestic welfare production standards either.
I appreciate that you have some concerns and would like to assure you that the NHS will be protected in any future trade agreement, including one with the US.
The Government has consulted widely on its negotiating plans, something which I welcome. Indeed, there were 158,720 responses submitted to the consultation recently held on trade negotiations with the US. Respondents noted, for example, that further reducing US tariffs across the automotive, ceramics, chemicals, processed food and drinks and textiles sectors could be beneficial.
Given the huge potential benefits for the U.K. in securing a deal with the USA, I am very disappointed to hear that you do not wish these negotiations to continue. I also think your worries about the Trade Bill are misplaced. I have every confidence that the Government will secure excellent trade deals around the world and Parliament will obviously have to approve each and every deal.
Thank you once again for writing to me about these important issues.
With best wishes.
Member of Parliament for Woking