Bloomberg | 18 March 2021
US trade czar Tai to discuss trade deal with UK next week
By Joe Mayes
Newly confirmed U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai will speak with her British counterpart, Secretary Liz Truss, next week to further talks on a possible trade agreement.
The call between Tai and Truss will likely happen Monday, according to a person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private.
Tai’s appointment, confirmed by the Senate this week, gives fresh impetus to the talks, which were effectively paused during the transition from the Trump administration.
A trade deal with the U.S. would be a major prize for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is seeking to deepen economic relationships globally following the U.K.’s split from the European Union. The call comes shortly after a recent boost to transatlantic ties, with the suspension of tariffs on many products related to a dispute over illegal aircraft subsidies.
Truss has said the bulk of a trade pact with the U.S. is already agreed and would boost both countries’ respective recoveries from the coronavirus pandemic. It is unclear whether President Joe Biden’s team will want to revisit chapters of the trade text, given they were negotiated under the Trump administration.
Neither the U.K.’s Department for International Trade nor a spokesman from the office of the U.S. Trade Representative immediately responded to requests for comment.