UAE: Liz Truss discusses post-Brexit trade deal
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She said the deal, which also includes Iceland and Liechtenstein will help cut tariffs on UK farm products such as cheese and meat. Britain is Norway’s top trading partner outside the European Union (EU). The UK has now agreed trade agreements with 67 non-EU countries since leaving the bloc last year.
The government said reduced import tariffs on shrimps, prawns and haddock would cut costs for UK fish processing, helping to support 18,000 jobs in Scotland, East Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire.
As Britain is no longer part of the European Common Fisheries Policy, it must deal directly with Norway and UK fleets are keen to have access to the country’s sub-Arctic seas.
Exports to the three countries can be done using digital documents, contracts and signatures, the Department for International Trade said.
And it said the agreement significantly cuts tariffs as high as 277 percent for exporters to Norway of West Country Farmhouse Cheddar, Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar, Traditional Welsh Caerphilly, and Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese.
There are also tariff reductions and quotas on pork, poultry and other goods, and UK wines and spirits including Scotch Whisky will also now be recognised in Norway and Iceland.
Ms Truss said: “Today’s deal will be a major boost for our trade with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, growing an economic relationship already worth £21.6 billion, while supporting jobs and prosperity in all four nations at home.”
International trade minister Ranil Jayawardena added: “This deal shows that the United Kingdom will continue to be a trade partner of choice, as we set the global trade agenda in areas like e-commerce and climate change.”
The department said the deal also means British businesses can bid for more government contracts in partner countries worth some £200 million a year, and will allow caps on roaming charges and simpler visa processes for high-skilled professionals.
There is also an agreement where nurses, lawyers, vets and other professionals will be able to move to the three countries without having to requalify.
Norway’s prime minister Erna Solberg said: “This agreement secures Norwegian jobs and facilitates economic growth, and it marks an important step forward in our relationship with the UK after Brexit.”
The Norwegian Government said the deal was one of the most comprehensive free trade agreements the country has ever negotiated but it was also recognised that it could not compare to previous arrangements when the UK was still in the EU.
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