The U.K. will struggle to broker improved trade deals after it exits the European Union, according to the former head of its trade department.
As an EU member, the U.K. is unable to negotiate its own trade deals and Brexiteers in May’s Conservative Party see pursuing accords with countries like the U.S., India and Australia as a key prize for leaving the bloc.
“It’s a fantasy to imagine there are wonderful new trade deals that other people haven’t got, that’s not what the evidence tells us,” Martin Donnelly, permanent secretary of the Department of International Trade until 2017, said in an interview in Dublin on Thursday. “Trade deals are done between blocs of the same economic power. As a medium-sized country, there is no way you make a trade deal that is more favorable.”
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