A summary of the most important trade news stories from the past week. This summary is emailed to our subscribers every Monday morning, along with the latest comment and analysis from The Channel Group. If you would like to receive this direct to your inbox, you can sign up at the bottom of this article or click here.
May meets Trump
Theresa May became the first foreign leader to meet the new US President, Donald Trump. Her visit started well, with warm words exchanged and a photo-shoot in front of the reinstated bust of Winston Churchill. However, after a series of controversial executive orders, May was under pressure to distance her from the President.
During a press conference, Theresa May said:
The president and I have mentioned future economic cooperation and trade. Trade between our two countries is already worth over 150 billion pounds a year. The U.S. is the single biggest source of inward investment to the U.K., and together, we have around $1 trillion invested in each other’s economies.
We are discussing how we can establish a trade negotiation agreement, take forward immediate high-level talks, lay the groundwork for U.K.-U.S. trade agreement and identify the practical steps we can take now in order to enable companies in both countries to trade and do business with one another more easily.
And I’m convinced that a trade deal between the U.S. and the U.K. is in the national interest of both countries and will cement the crucial relationship that exists between us, particularly as the U.K. leaves the European Union and reaches out to the world.
President Trump has previously expressed his ambition to deliver a trade deal within 90 days of Brexit. Theresa May has echoed Mr Trump’s enthusiasm but has said that any deal must be in the UK’s own interest – keen to confront the accusations that the US will seek favourable terms in any deal under the new “America First” regime.
Trump on Trade War Path
Donald Trump caused tensions with Mexico to rise further, when he signed an executive order paving the way for the US-Mexico border wall. He insisted that Mexico would pay for it, saying that the US would add a 20% import tariff to Mexican goods. Not only has this angered Mexicans – with the President refusing to visit Trump as planned this week – but it also make little economic sense. the most of an import tariff is generally passed on to consumers in the importing country, so Mr Trump will likely find that Americans are indirectly paying for the wall.
Trump also signed an executive order on the US’s involvement with the TPP. Toby Illingworth explains:
- Spain backs early trade deal talks between UK and EU.
- Theresa May is planning a China trade mission to bolster economic ties between the two countries.
- The US trade deficit is caused the slowest growth in the economy for 5 years, according to the latest statistics from the Bureau of Economic Analysis in Washington.
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Before this, he worked for GlaxoSmithKline and as a theatre producer. Thomas enjoys playing cricket, cycling, and reading.