Trade Deals Around the World: November Edition 2022
Trade Deals Around the World is our periodic update, which gives you a quick and easy overview of what has been happening in the many trade deal negotiations worldwide.
We focus on the European Union and the United Kingdom and watch China and the United States. We look back at October and focus on trade deals only in this update. Happy reading!
European Exports more than EUR 1 Trillion under Free Trade Agreement
EU trade deals mean increased exports, more stable economic relations and secure access to resources, a new report out today shows. EU exports to preferential partners for the first time surpassed €1 trillion in 2021, according to the Commission’s 2nd Annual Report on the Implementation and Enforcement of EU Trade Agreements. The report also shows that EU efforts to break down trade barriers and support small businesses are helping EU exports and thus supporting European jobs.
The European Union and Mercosur
All EU member states still need to ratify the Mercosur trade agreement.
France and Germany, in particular, have blocked the ratification since 2020, thus meeting the demands of environmental NGOs and agricultural lobbies. The agreement has been criticised for overlooking poor environmental standards and non-observance of protection for indigenous peoples in Brazil, but it has also attracted the suspicion of European agricultural associations. Concerned about losing Brazil as a strategic partner in the long term, and motivated by warnings from Spain about the EU’s decreasing influence in Latin America, EU officials are now planning to land the agreement in a second attempt.
The European Union's High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, said Monday that the bloc he represents is "fully committed” to finalising the stalled free-trade deal with the Mercosur bloc.
Borrell, speaking during a visit to Montevideo, called on Mercosur member states and the EU to seal their agreement, cautioning that “other actors” could “intervene” if a deal isn’t reached.
The European Union and The United States
The tension between the EU and the US is rising.
It had seemed like the bad blood between Brussels and Washington was easing on Biden's watch. Facing a common foe in China, the EU and the U.S. last year struck a truce on the tariffs that former President Donald Trump slapped on European steel and aluminium. Over this year, Russia's war against Ukraine has meant that America and Europe needed to present a united front, at least politically.
Cracks are now starting to re-emerge, however. The EU is furious that the U.S. is pouring subsidies into the homegrown electric car industry. Accusing Washington of protectionism, Europe is now threatening to draw up its own defences.
Unsurprisingly, French President Emmanuel Macron is leading the charge. “The Americans are buying American and pursuing a very aggressive strategy of state aid. The Chinese are closing their market. We cannot be the only area, the most virtuous in terms of climate, which considers that there is no European preference,” Macron told the French daily Les Echos.
Other Trade Agreement News on the European Union
- EU and Japan start negotiations to include rules on cross-border data flows in their Economic Partnership Agreement - European Commission
- EU in the driver’s seat on Indo-Pacific trade deals - The Interpreter
- New Thailand-EU Partnership & Cooperation Agreement: a Step Towards a Free Trade Agreement? - Watson Farley & Williams
The United Kingdom and the European Union
UK Minister Conor Burns wants to downgrade climate change in trade deal negotiations.
In hitting Britain’s environmental objectives, Burns argued, “we should not be expecting developing countries to be poorer — but … we should be using the opportunity of trade agreements, trade ambitions, trade deals, to help developing countries get to the same standard of living that we enjoy and take for granted, but doing so in a way that did not have the damaging and environmental impact that our industrial revolution did.”
The United Kingdom and CPTPP + China and CPTPP
Discussions for the UK’s accession into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) are continuing, Singapore’s trade minister Gan Kim Yong said during a meeting of the trade group.
The UK is the first economy outside the original 11 signatories to seek admission and several other economies have expressed an interest to join…
Members of a trans-Pacific free trade pact could agree in principle to allow Britain to join as a new member this year, using the European country's case as a model for future aspirants, Japan's economic minister Daishiro Yamagiwa said…
Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Tuesday there is no consensus yet for China to join a trans-Pacific trade pact, although Singapore believed it would be possible for Beijing to meet the trade bloc's conditions.
The United Kingdom and the United States
Things are still not going well with the negotiations on a new trade deal between the United States and the United Kingdom.
“There aren’t currently any negotiations taking place with the US and I don’t have any expectation that those are going to start in the short to medium term.”
It is the first time the government has conceded there is virtually no chance of getting agreement on an early bilateral trade deal with the US, Britain’s biggest trading partner, despite it being coveted by Brexit supporters as one of the major potential benefits of leaving the EU.
Instead, the new prime minister said her priorities would be joining the trans-Pacific trading partnership of 11 countries, including Australia, Canada and Singapore, as well as striking deals with the Gulf States and India.
The United Kingdom and India
The negotiations for a trade deal between the UK and India are stalling.
Britain said it will only sign a trade deal with India when there is one that “meets the UK’s interests,” in response to comments from Delhi that talks needed to be a win-win for both sides.
“We remain clear that we won’t sacrifice quality for speed and will only sign when we have a deal that meets the UK’s interests,” a spokesperson for the British government said on Friday.
Data localisation and UK companies being allowed to bid for Indian government contracts are among the issues causing a possible deadlock in the final stages of the India-UK free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations towards a Diwali draft completion deadline, according to a UK media report on Sunday.
Other Trade Agreement News on the United Kingdom
- UK, Ireland signal new hope of deal to end Brexit trade feud - AP News
- Brexit: UK urged to reveal economic impact of trade deals - Yahoo
- UK Starts Free Trade Talks With Gulf States, But Human Rights Seem Off The Menu - Forbes
The United States and Taiwan
Taiwan is hopeful of signing an “early harvest” of trade liberalisation measures with the United States before the end of the year amid the ongoing tensions both Taipei and Washington are experiencing with mainland China.
Taipei’s cabinet-level Office of Trade Negotiations expects to sign some of the 11 components of the US-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade over the next two and a half months after talks began in mid-August, according to executive secretary Hsiao Chen-jung.
It is hoped the breakthrough will lead towards a deeper agreement that the self-ruled island has sought with its second-largest trade partner and long-time political backer since the 1990s.