Over recent months, we have successfully secured a further two trade deals with Ghana and Cameroon. This means we have trade deals with 66 countries now, plus the EU, worth £890 billion of trade in 2019. These deals promote free and fair trade, help create jobs and encourage growth and prosperity globally.
I am determined to keep international development and poverty reduction at the heart of Britain’s trade and investment policy.
Helping people to help themselves is the surest way to end poverty for good and, as an independent nation for the first time in almost fifty years, Britain can play a leading global role in making it happen.
This is a message that needs to be heard further afield and one that I clearly set out as I joined today’s World Economic Forum meeting of the Regional Action Group for Africa, discussing the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, which aims to increase trade integration in Africa.
We want to strengthen old relationships and forge new friendships. Deepening and developing mutual partnerships with Africa, and improving our investment and financing offers, is a priority for HM Government over the coming decade.
The United Kingdom-Africa Investment Summit in 2020 and the Africa Investment Conference earlier this year have helped us to creating new lasting partnerships, increasing investment, jobs and growth in every corner of the United Kingdom and the African continent.
It is vital we continue to champion the needs of the many and use our voice on the world stage to signal our unwavering commitment to strengthening trade ties with Africa.
Britain’s trade partnership agreement with Ghana secures tariff-free trade and provides both our countries with a platform for greater economic and cultural cooperation.
Total trade with Ghana was worth £1.2 billion in 2019 and this deal means Ghanaian products that British shoppers love, such as bananas, tinned tuna and cocoa, will benefit from tariff-free access to our shores.
Some of Britain’s exports are also set to benefit from preferential access to Ghana in the coming years, including machinery, electronics and chemical products.
This agreement provides opportunities for businesses that provide vital jobs and livelihoods for our two countries and I am looking forward to being able to deepen and further our relationship with Ghana in the future.
More recently, the United Kingdom-Cameroon agreement was signed, which secures benefits for both British and Cameroonian businesses.
International trade and investment are engines of economic growth and job creation around the globe; our agreement with Cameroon will secure around £200 million of trade between our two countries.
Both countries are able to export more goods, boosting prosperity and ensuring our trade will continue to flourish and grow. The British market accounts for 12% of total exports of bananas from Cameroon and this agreement provides tariff-free market access to the United Kingdom, as well as preferential access for British exporters, who sold £50 million in goods to Cameroon in 2019.
I look forward to working with Cameroon to extend our trading relationship further in the future to help better support jobs and foster investment.
Our commitment to economic growth in emerging markets
We have now secured deals with 31 African, Caribbean and Pacific countries, covering £19 billion of trade.
These deals are solid evidence of Britain’s determination to champion free trade around the world, fostering growth, creating jobs and raising living standards for all.
But this is just the beginning.
This article was originally published on LinkedIn on 29th March 2021.