Uk Trade Agreements with Us
UK Trade Agreements with US: What You Need to Know
The United Kingdom and the United States have always shared a strong economic bond, and this has been further strengthened by their bilateral trade agreements. As the two countries continue to negotiate their future trading relationship, it is essential to understand the implications of these agreements on businesses and industries in both countries.
The UK and US have a long history of economic ties and have been each other`s largest trading partners for over a century. The UK exported goods worth $66 billion and imported goods worth $57 billion from the US in 2020, making it the UK`s largest trading partner outside of the EU.
Despite the UK leaving the EU in 2020, it has continued to benefit from the trade agreements already in place with the US. The UK and US have several agreements that govern the trade of goods, services, and intellectual property between the two countries.
The most significant of these agreements is the 1994 US-UK Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA). Under this agreement, both countries recognize each other`s standards and procedures for testing and certifying products, making it easier for businesses to export goods to each other`s markets.
The MRA is particularly important for the automotive, medical device, and telecommunications industries, where both countries have strict standards for safety and performance. The agreement, therefore, facilitates access to each other`s markets and reduces the costs and time required for testing and certification.
Another essential agreement is the UK-US Trade and Investment Working Group. Established in 2017, the group aims to deepen the economic relationship between the two countries by identifying opportunities for trade and investment.
As part of this initiative, the UK and US signed a trade continuity agreement in 2019, which ensured that existing trade agreements were maintained after the UK`s departure from the EU. The agreement protects trade in goods and services between the two countries, as well as promoting investment and supporting small businesses.
However, the UK and US are currently negotiating a new free trade agreement, which will replace the existing continuity agreement. The negotiations began in May 2021 and are expected to take several months to complete. If successful, the agreement could lead to a significant increase in trade between the two countries.
The proposed agreement covers a wide range of areas, including agriculture, digital trade, and intellectual property. However, there are concerns that the agreement could lead to the opening up of the UK`s healthcare sector to US companies, leading to increased privatization and higher drug prices.
In conclusion, the UK and US have a long-standing and mutually beneficial economic relationship, which has been further solidified by their trade agreements. While the UK has left the EU, it has continued to benefit from the agreements already in place with the US. The ongoing negotiations for a new free trade agreement offer exciting opportunities for businesses in the two countries, but also pose potential risks that need to be carefully assessed and addressed. As such, it is vital to stay up to date with any developments in this area and to seek professional advice where necessary.