Daily Management Review

In Ongoing Post-Brexit Trade Pursuit, UK To Tap Mexico After US


07/26/2017




In Ongoing Post-Brexit Trade Pursuit, UK To Tap Mexico After US
In order to launch discussions for a post-Brexit deal as part of the Britain's ongoing efforts to secure its trading future outside of the EU, the U.K.'s International Trade Secretary Liam Fox is visitng Mexico after the U.S.
 
In order to discuss continuing trade cooperation between the two countries once Britain leaves the EU, and discuss the potential for a future trade deal, Fox is to meet with Mexico's Minister of the Economy Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal.
 
And to discuss tightening ties with Australia and neighboring commonwealth countries, Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson was also in Sydney on Wednesday.
 
While being part of the union, member states cannot negotiate independent trade deals, EU rules stipulate. However, ahead of its departure in March 2019, the U.K. is allowed to hold preliminary discussions.
 
Mexico is the 15th largest in the world and an emerging economy. Most notably in the food, chemicals, financial services and construction industries, it shares £3.6 billion ($4.6 billion) worth of trade with the U.K. every year.
 
"Some of the UK's main exports to Mexico include industrial products, including engine parts. And whisky accounts for almost 8 percent of the U.K.'s exports to Mexico," Paul Hollingsworth, U.K. Economist at Capital Economics, said.
 
"I imagine it's going to be more on the services side of things where the U.K. sees bigger opportunities for trade though, for example in insurance activities."
 
Including building a new airport in Mexico City to boost international traffic to the capital, Mexico is also currently investing heavily in its infrastructure.
 
The development will initially accommodate 68 million passengers per year, later rising to 125 million and is the biggest infrastructure project to emerge from Latin America.
 
In that project worth a total of £40 million ($52 million), several British businesses already hold construction contracts. And according to a spokesperson for Britain's Department for International Trade, their number can be expected to rise as "further significant opportunities" arise.
 
However, including the agriculture industry, a deal with Mexico could also threaten to undercut U.K. businesses. President Donald Trump had accused U.S. businesses of outsourcing manufacturing jobs to Mexico to reduce costs, thereby damaging U.S. industry during his 2016 election campaign.
 
Following Trump's continued talk last week of a building a wall to divide the two nations, the clashes between the U.S. and Mexico rumble on. But his excitement over a "very big and exciting” " deal with the U.K. was also tweeted by him on Tuesday.
 
Meanwhile, in order to update its existing agreement, signed two decades ago, the EU is currently pursuing a new free trade deal with Mexico. The union hopes to secure a deal "by the end of the year", the EU Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom said in May.
 
Britain will need to secure a separate agreement and will not be privy to this deal post-Brexit. But by saying that it will damage the U.K.'s fragile negotiating position, analysts have criticized Fox's early globetrotting.
 
"Fox turning up in a whole host of markets is unlikely to play well with the EU," Mujtaba Rahman, managing director of Eurasia Group in Europe, told CNBC over the phone. "We need good will from Europe."
 
(Source:www.cnbc.com) 






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