Home » Politics » Biden snubs UK! US President angers Boris as trade deal off cards for years
Biden snubs UK! US President angers Boris as trade deal off cards for years
March 30, 2021
Brexit: Simon Coveney shut down by host on UK-US trade deal
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The Express understands a “fast and efficient” US trade deal is off the cards after Washington ruled out using a special exemption to speed up trade legislation through Congress. This special power, which expires on July 1, is known as the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) and was established by the Trump administration to accelerate the passing of trade deals through Congress.
This means a potential deal would be subject to significant scrutiny from Senators with a raft of amendments expected, especially on Agricultural related matters.
Tensions also rose last night after the Biden administration published a list of British goods that could be hit by a 25 percent tariff in retaliation for the UK imposing digital services tax (DST) on technology firms.
Goods include games consoles, furniture, make-up and overcoats.
A UK Government spokesperson warned if the US proceeded to “implement these measures” then they “would consider all options to defend UK interests and industry.”
Sources close to International Trade Secretary Liz Truss last night said the TPA and Tariff threat creates “an unnecessary and disappointing barrier.”
But one Whitehall source said a deal could “certainly be achieved” adding: “There is a positive tone on both sides but it could take years until the end of the current presidential term.”
Ms Truss held talks with Katherine Tai, President Joe Biden’s trade representative last week in an attempt to hammer out a timeline of a deal.
The talks officials said, marked a key moment to bring forward a UK-US Free Trade Agreement as the two women spoke for the first time.
But Ms Tai said not much had changed since Trump’s negotiations with the UK were initiated in 2018.
Speaking before the Senate Finance Committee, Ms Tai added: “It will be important to me to review the progress in the conversations so far, to review the objectives in light of all the changes that have taken place in the last two-and-a-half years.”
The White House last night told the Express there was “no set timeline” for completing the US-UK deal.
A UK Government spokesperson, added: “The UK has always made it clear that a broad and mutually beneficial agreement is more important than a deal before a preset deadline.”
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Figures from the House of Commons library revealed the UK exported £141billion of goods and services to the US in 2019, 21 percent of all exports.
The Express understands trade officials believe a UK trade deal with the US could be worth between £10billion and £12billion.