A minister has been accused of “begging” for a trade deal with the United States, following a speech in which she urged Washington to wake up to Brexit and “make a decision.”
Penny Mordaunt raised her eyebrows when she said at an event in Atlanta that she wanted to “wake you up to an opportunity,” asking for an “answer that acknowledges this moment.”
Joe Biden has slowed down trade talks, embarrassing Brexit supporters who have argued that a deal would be easy and the biggest victory to leave the European Union.
But, speaking in the Georgian capital, Mordaunt praised the two countries as “a shared cultural DNA,” emphasizing “wealth creation, open trading systems, protection of property rights.”
“The most important partner for us is the United States. For the United States to wait to seize this opportunity would be detrimental to us, but also to theirs, ”said the Minister of Commerce.
“You have to increase business opportunities and attract investment. Want the prospect of a world-class farm deal? Do you think you will get that from the EU? “
Stating that Brexit has allowed the UK to ‘reconnect with the global economy’, Mordaunt told the World Affairs Council: ‘It is our choice. Now the United States has a decision to make. How are you going to respond? “
The leader of the Best for Britain group, which is campaigning for a better Brexit deal, called the speech “shameful” as companies scrambled to cope with the “failed deal with the EU.”
“It is shameful for the government that said the United States would demand an agreement and plead now,” Naomi Smith said.
«Et, compte tenu de leurs antecédents en matière d’abandon des normes pour conclure d’autres accords commerciaux, with level of desespoir devrait sonner l’alarme pour que se soucie des services de santé, de l’agriculture et des normes alimentaires au United Kingdom. “
Nick Thomas-Symonds, Labor shadow trade secretary, said: “The 2019 Conservative Party manifesto promised a trade deal between the UK and the US within three years.
“As time runs out until this deadline, it is a sad indication of the lack of progress that a government trade minister should travel to the United States to remind American politicians of an ‘opportunity’ to get a thumbs up. . “
Tony Spisak, a policy officer at the Tony Blair Institute, called him: “A strong candidate for the most embarrassing speech by a government minister in 2021.”
The Atlanta speech came after the United States blocked a deal to remove tariffs on British steel and aluminum, amid anger over threats against the Irish protocol.
Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Secretary of Commerce, also speaking in the United States, admitted that Brussels, which obtained the lifting of tariffs, enjoys, as the largest trading partner, more power in Washington.
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