UK 'pleased with progress on CPTPP' says Lord Grimstone

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According to Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura, the 11-nation group has confirmed it will hold a meeting in the next to discuss the UK’s membership. Not only did the minister reveal the timeline of the meeting but he also claimed the UK’s membership of the group would be a significant addition. He said on Wednesday: “I believe that the importance of Britain as a strategic partner and the expansion of the high-level rules beyond the Asia-Pacific are extremely significant.

“It was agreed between member countries to hold the meeting in about a month.”

The UK and Japan signed a trade deal last year as part of Britain’s shift towards the Asia-Pacific region.

Japan is also the CPTPP’s trade chair and will lead the meeting on the UK’s membership.

The CPTPP is a trade alliance made up of 11 nations and eliminates up to 95 percent of all tariffs on goods.

The CPTPP is also one of the largest free trade areas in the world and accounted for 13 percent of the world’s GDP in 2019.

With the UK part of the alliance, it is thought that figure may rise to 16 percent.

While the UK continues with its progress to join the trade alliance, the German economy has struggled to recover due to the supply chain issues caused by the pandemic.

The country’s automotive industry has been impacted by supply chain issues with BMW, Siemens AG and Volkswagen are all reporting a lack of supply of materials from the most basic wooden pallets to memory chips.

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Clemens Fuest, president of the Munich-based Ifo institute said: “Things are actually getting worse rather than better.”

Thomas Nuernberger, managing director of sales at Mulfingen, Germany-based EBM Papst, a maker of industrial fans, told Bloomberg: “In my career, we haven’t had a situation with so many commodities being scarce at the same time, and I’ve been dealing with the same materials since 1996.

“This is the most difficult situation in the global supply chain I’ve witnessed.”

He added: “I count on growth being delayed until 2023 because even in 2022 we will still have problems with semiconductors and the container shipping turmoil will also last well into 2022.”

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While countries across the world struggled due to the pandemic, the UK hopes joining the CPTPP will provide a huge economic boost to the country.

The UK began formal negotiations in June to join the alliance.

Once the UK joins, it is estimated the combined GDP of the 11-nations would amount to £11trillion.

Announcing negotiations, Ms Truss said: “CPTPP already has a significant global presence, and our accession would send a powerful signal to the rest of the world that the UK, as an independent trading nation, will continue to champion free and fair trade, fight protectionism and slash tariffs at every opportunity.

“It will mean stronger trading links with the Indo-Pacific, which is vital to our goals for trade, investment, supply chains as well as supporting green growth, women’s economic empowerment and high standards for British workers.

“The launch of negotiations marks a huge milestone in our accession process, and I look forward to talks starting in the coming weeks.”

Mr Johnson added: “Membership of the CPTTP free-trade partnership would open up unparalleled opportunities for British businesses and consumers in the fast-growing Indo-Pacific.

“It’s an exciting opportunity to build on this country’s entrepreneurial spirit and free trading history to bring economic benefits across the whole of the UK.”

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