But given the GCC`s current internal divisions – vis-à-vis Qatar – and its weak track record in ratifying such agreements, will a free trade agreement really be concluded? What are the benefits for both parties? „The United Kingdom has made no secret of its intention to use the so-called continuity agreements with Japan, signed in October 2020, and now Singapore, but also Vietnam, which was signed the day after the Singapore Agreement, as a means of further strengthening the UK`s engagement in the region and, ultimately, as a springboard for accession to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. With Singapore and Vietnam, both asean members, the UK also has an interest in using these agreements to strengthen its relations with the Southeast Asian trading bloc and become, when the time comes, an ASEAN „dialogue partner,“ he said. URSULA von der Leyen, EU leader, said there was a way to a British trade deal Britain has approached the United Arab Emirates to reach a trade deal after Brexit, said the UAE`s economy minister Sultan Al Mansouri. The deal will allow UK businesses and consumers to continue to enjoy preferential access to the Egyptian market after the end of the Brexit transition period. The trade balance with the two main trading partners of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates is favourable to the United Kingdom, the United Kingdom exporting $7.6 billion to the United Arab Emirates, while importing $3 billion (including $1 billion for oil and gas) and exporting $3.6 billion to Saudi Arabia and $3.3 billion (including $2.6 billion in oil and gas). Australia is currently negotiating a free trade agreement with the United Kingdom. UKSFTA will come into force on 1 January 2021. The UK and Singapore will negotiate an investment protection agreement within two and four years of UKSFTA coming into force. A GCC free trade agreement with Lebanon has been ratified but has not been implemented. Negotiations are ongoing with Australia, New Zealand and China and preliminary discussions are underway for four other countries/blocks, including Australia, China and the EU.
At a meeting of a group of friends between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom in London, Gargash welcomed Boris Johnson`s statement that Britain would be a „catalyst for free trade“ after Brexit. LONDON: Britain`s ambassador to Egypt signed an agreement with the country`s deputy foreign minister for Europe, Badr Abdelatty, on Saturday. „We need a confident and active Britain, closely involved in The Security Issues of the Gulf and the Middle East,“ Gargash said, adding that Britain was a critical partner in trade, defence and security. The UAE wants to conclude a free trade agreement between Britain and the Gulf countries as soon as possible after Brexit, its foreign minister has said. „It`s up to Britain to do what it does. Human rights will not be on the agenda, but it will not necessarily be something that will be explicitly addressed in a free trade agreement. We don`t deal with human rights, so it`s not in that context, but we could be treated in another way,“ Patchett-Joyce said. To date, the United Kingdom has managed to sign some 20 trade agreements covering 50 countries or territories, but they account for only about 8pc of all trade in the United Kingdom. In fiscal year 2018/2019, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, contracts amounted to $20,535 million, $7.897 million and $4,176 million in exports. In early November, a joint statement on trade and investment between the UK and the GCC was issued, which agreed on a joint review of trade and investment.
In particular, it aims to liberalise trade in services. One of the key points of the free trade agreement between the EU and the GCC was that the EU wanted a clause on human rights and political development. While, according to one communication, the GCC had no problems