Britain will reportedly be in the “front seat” to negotiate a new trade deal with the incoming administration of Donald Trump.
That is according to a top Republican – Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker – quoted by the BBC.
After meeting British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson Corker said that a trade deal between the two countries would be a priority as Britain prepares to leave the European Union.
Had a very good meeting today with British Foreign Secretary
BorisJohnson</a>. <a href="https://t.co/Azcx6snfea">pic.twitter.com/Azcx6snfea</a></p>— Senator Bob Corker (SenBobCorker) January 10, 2017
On returning from the United States Johnson told the UK parliament: “I have to say to the house that there is a huge fund of goodwill for the United Kingdom on Capitol Hill and a very large measure of understanding that now is the time to do a free trade deal. They want to do it and they want to do it fast and that understanding was most vivid and most urgent on the part of the incoming administration.”
Britain cannot sign any trade deal with the US until it leaves the EU which under current plans will likely be in 2019.
Great visit to the #US. Held valuable discussions in #NYC yesterday w/ senior members of President-elect
realDonaldTrump</a>'s team (1/2)</p>— Boris Johnson (BorisJohnson) January 9, 2017
Excellent talking today w/— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) January 9, 2017
SpeakerRyan</a> & other Congressional leaders <a href="https://twitter.com/SenateMajLdr">SenateMajLdr
SenBobCorker</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/SenatorCardin">SenatorCardin. #SpecialRelationship (2/2) pic.twitter.com/c2zYufuwvh
Banks shift lobbying focus to EU
At the same time banks with large London operations has said they will step up their lobbying of EU officials over the financial industry’s access to the single European market.
They will target French politicians, EU regulators and government officials to explain that Europe will harm itself if Brexit is used to undermine London’s position as the region’s main financial centre.
“The battle for Britain is over, the battle for France is about to begin,” one senior lobbyist told Reuters.
The banks’ focus is shifting because after scores of meetings and research reports they feel they are running out of new points to make.
Prime Minister Theresa May said on Sunday she was not interested in Britain keeping “bits” of its EU membership, interpreted by some as signalling she will favour immigration controls over access to the single market.
The banks say they may begin moving staff and operations out of London in the next few months if there is no clarity on the issue.
“A report for the lobby group CityUK by PwC, calculated that there could be 100,000 fewer jobs by 2020. ” https://t.co/OHrNJp8RmV— Eugenio Proto (@eugenioproto) January 3, 2017