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UK chasing ‘mini trade deals’ with individual US States

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The UK is close to signing mini trade deals with six individual US states. 

Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg, UK trade secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan revealed the likely deals were memorandums of understanding covering areas including mutual recognition of professional qualifications and improved access to procurement contracts. 

Some of the states in question include Indiana and Texas, with the former being an important potential partner for the UK as it’s one of the largest US exporters of maize, soya beans and tomatoes. Other states that the UK has been in talks with include California, Georgia, Tennessee, Oklahoma and South Carolina. 

Trevelyan said in her interview that: “The US big-picture deal is important and we’ll get there when the White House has the view that they have got their domestic situation [under control], and they want to look out again.

She added: “In the meantime, there’s loads that businesses would like us to try and sort out in terms of market access barriers.

“State-by-state we are doing all sorts. “We’ve got some really good discussions going on. Watch this space.”

Read more: ‘Don’t take UK exporters for granted’ warning as trade deficit widens

The ‘domestic situation’ Trevelyan refers to is in the main the Northern Ireland protocol for which President Biden has been outspoken. Increased efforts have been seen over the last couple of weeks to find a resolution, and those on the US side of politics believe trade issues relating to the protocol can be fixed, with US congressman Richard Neal commenting: “I have on this delegation people who are experts at trade and they also would confirm that they think these issues on the trade front, if that’s really the dispute, could be ironed out quickly.”

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