International Trade Secretary Liz Truss spoke with the ministers of Japan and New Zealand on Monday morning to request to join that free trade agreement between 11 nations.
The announcement comes as the United Kingdom celebrates on Monday a year since it left the European Union and became an independent trading nation.
“Joining the CPTPP would deepen the UK’s access to fast-growing markets and major economies, including Mexico, Malaysia and Vietnam, to the benefit of UK businesses,” the British government said in a press release.
On December 30, 2018, the CPTPP entered into force among the first six countries that ratified the agreement, Canada, Australia, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore. On January 14, 2019, the validity for Vietnam began.
The government added that joining the £ 9 trillion partnership will lower tariffs for UK industries, including food and drink, and cars, while creating new opportunities for modern industries such as technology and services. , which will ultimately support and create high value jobs across the UK.
“Unlike membership in the European Union, joining does not require the UK to relinquish control of our laws, borders or money,” the government added in the statement.
UK trade with the group was worth £ 111 billion in 2019, growing 8% annually since 2016. The benefits that CPTPP membership will bring to businesses include, according to the government:
Modern digital business rules that allow data to flow freely between members, remove unnecessary barriers for businesses, and protect business source code and encryption.
Eliminate tariffs faster on UK exports, including whiskey (down from 165% to 0% in Malaysia) and cars (down to 0% in Canada by 2022, two years earlier than through the UK trade deal United and Canada).
Rules of origin that allow content from any country within CPTPP to count as “originating.” For example, this would mean that UK-made cars could use more Japanese-sourced auto parts, such as batteries.
Easier travel for entrepreneurs between CPTPP countries, such as the possibility of faster and cheaper visas.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “One year after our departure from the European Union, we are forging new partnerships that will bring huge economic benefits to the people of Britain.
“Applying to be the first new country to join CPTPP demonstrates our ambition to do business on the best terms with our friends and partners around the world and to be an enthusiastic champion of global free trade.”
The UK will publish its negotiating objectives, scoping analysis and response to the consultation before the negotiations, which are expected to start this spring.
CPTPP is made up of Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.