City AM | 22 September 2020
Liz Truss hails ‘productive’ fourth round of UK-US trade talks
by James Warrington
Trade secretary Liz Truss today said the UK and US had made “significant” progress in reaching a trade deal after wrapping up a “productive” fourth round of talks.
Truss said the two sides exchanged their first tariff orders and held a series of detailed market access discussions during the round.
The US and the UK also reiterated their commitment to continuing negotiations “at pace” throughout the autumn ahead of the US presidential election in November.
“The exchange of tariff offers is a notable milestone, and the speed at which this stage has been reached demonstrates the momentum behind these negotiations,” the trade department said in a statement.
The latest round of talks included a range of topics including competition, financial services and cross border trade in services.
The fifth round of talks is set to take place in mid to late October, with further discussions scheduled over the next few weeks.
These discussions include talks on telecoms, intellectual property and market access.
The UK has prioritised striking a trade deal with the US as it looks to carve out new trading relationships for its post-Brexit economy.
Earlier this month Britain secured a free trade deal with Japan — the first major agreement to be struck since the UK left the EU earlier this year.
The government had originally hoped to strike a trade deal with the US ahead of the upcoming presidential election, but has since accepted that the process will take longer.
Concerns have also been raised that a deal could be scuppered by the UK’s digital services tax, which came into force earlier this year.
US President Donald Trump has argued that tech taxes unfairly target American countries, and senators have warned the levy will complicate transatlantic trade negotiations.