The Brussels trade world has had a week mainly focused on Canada, climate and energy.
There may be benefits for the UK in pursuing future free trade deals with ‘Anglosphere’ countries around the world post-Brexit. But it will not be easy, and Britain’s top priority really ought to be sorting out its future trade relationship with the EU.
Environmental impacts such as carbon emissions should be captured at the border, in the form of tariffs which level the playing field between competitor producer countries, a prominent UK economist and government adviser has argued.
The United Kingdom is committed to negotiating a free trade agreement with the United States after it leaves the EU – even if the deal turns out to be ‘shallower’ in nature than the government would like, according to UK trade minister George Hollingbery.
The European Parliament has voted for Ursula von der Leyen to lead the next European Commission. The German nominee obtained support from a narrow majority of nine MEPs.
This will be a week where the European Union will test its ability to decide on its fundamental policy direction and on international trade.
The week started with a gloomy assessment of the transatlantic tariff threat picture by the trade commissioner and ended with threats of new US tariffs on France, and potentially Britain, following moves in Paris and London to giant digital company profits.
Five years after the Maidan revolution, the ‘deep and comprehensive’ free trade agreement between the European Union and Ukraine is turning out to be an important vehicle in the Eastern European country’s gradual economic decoupling from Russia. It is also buttressing the country’s slow but steady reform path.
The United Kingdom is putting a lot of faith in its membership of one multinational organisation — the World Trade Organization — as a way of mitigating some of the problems associated with its imminent departure from another (the European Union). But might that faith be misplaced?
The international trade committee of the European Parliament will be led by experienced MEPs with a stake in continuity in current European Union trade policy. Even if the Green group is not in the management this term, the signs are that advocates of a stronger focus on labour, and in …