(CTN News) – Britain’s Kemi Badenoch, the business and trade secretary, has officially signed a treaty confirming the country’s accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), marking the largest post-Brexit trade deal for the UK to date.
The treaty was signed in New Zealand and will now undergo parliamentary scrutiny in the UK and legislative processes in other CPTPP member nations. The UK government stated that over 99% of current UK goods exported to CPTPP countries will soon be eligible for zero tariffs.
Potential Impact on Britain’s Growth Prospects: Assessing the CPTPP Deal
The CPTPP is a trade agreement comprising 11 member countries, including Canada, Mexico, Japan, Australia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Malaysia.
By joining the bloc, the UK becomes the first European nation to do so, with the government emphasizing the potential to unlock trade with a region boasting a total GDP of £12 trillion ($15.7 trillion).
However, the actual impact of the deal on Britain’s growth prospects remains to be seen. According to the government’s estimates, the deal is expected to raise long-term domestic GDP by just 0.08%, which is unlikely to offset the trade losses with Europe resulting from Brexit. The UK officially left the EU on January 31, 2020.
Kemi Badenoch expressed that Britain’s status as an independent trading nation enables it to join an “exciting, growing, forward-looking trade bloc.” She further stated that the deal would contribute to the growth of the UK economy, building upon the existing support provided by CPTPP-owned businesses to hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country.
The government cited 2019 data, claiming that one in every 100 workers in Britain was employed by a business headquartered in a CPTPP nation. Badenoch also emphasized the potential of the deal to provide unparalleled access to a market of over 500 million people.
The CPTPP evolved from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), originally initiated in the United States but disintegrated when former President Donald Trump withdrew US involvement.
Sean McGuire, the Europe Director at the Confederation of British Industry, believes that the deal, coupled with Britain’s global trade agenda, has the potential to drive export-led growth in critical sectors such as services and green technology while enhancing supply chain resilience.
McGuire stated that the UK firms will explore new trade and investment opportunities in some of the world’s most dynamic markets, considering the agreement’s global significance as one of the largest trade agreements.