Britain’s Trade Minister Liz Truss said on Monday that striking a trade deal with New Zealand, one of its smallest trading partners, would be a priority, as her government desperately looks to line up post-Brexit agreements.
Political turmoil in Britain has generated uncertainty over its withdrawal from the European Union. With it future trade ties in doubt, British officials have been working to minimize the impact of Brexit on non-EU trading partners.
Truss, appointed earlier this year by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, arrived in New Zealand on Monday, as part of a three-nation tour, which includes Australia and Japan, aimed at preparing for trade negotiations after Brexit.
“We’re going to be leaving the European Union on October 31 with or without a deal and as part of that agenda, striking trade deals much more broadly than we have been doing is going to be vitally important,” Truss said in Wellington ahead of the talks with her New Zealand counterpart David Parker.
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