In addition to agreeing a future trade deal with the EU, the UK has also secured continued trade arrangements and preferential access to key markets around the world. Where there are no agreements in place, goods can be traded under WTO rules.
The priorities for members across our sectors in future trade agreements are regulatory alignment, tariff free access and customs agreements to facilitate as frictionless trade as possible.
The UK Government has worked with key international partners to ensure Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreements (BASAs) and/ or working arrangements are in place now the UK has left the EU. Information on BASAs with the USA, Brazil and Canada and Working Arrangements agreed with Japan can be found on the CAA website.
UK Global Tariff (UKGT)
The UK now has its own tariff schedule, which replaces the EU Common External Tariff. The UK Global Tariff will apply to all goods imported into the UK from 1 January 2021 unless an exception applies.
Exceptions can include:
- an arrangement under the Generalised System of Preference
- a trade arrangement between the UK and another country
- a tariff suspension of relief in place
Businesses can check tariff lines using the Check UK trade tariffs from 1 January 2021 tool.
UK Continuity trade agreements with non-EU countries
As of 1 January 2021, EU third country trade agreements no longer apply to the UK. The UK has sought to replicate effects of previous trading agreements to provide continuity for UK business.
gov.uk continue to update their webpages detailing agreements that the UK has concluded, that are in effect and the progress of discussions with other countries.
Agreements with the following countries and trading blocs took effect from 1 January 2021
- Andean countries
- CARIFORUM trade bloc
- Central America
- Côte d’Ivoire
- Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) trade bloc
- Faroe Islands
- Iceland and Norway
- North Macedonia
- Pacific states
- Palestinian Authority
- South Korea
- South African Customs Union and Mozambique (SACUM) trade bloc
Signed Trade agreements and ongoing discussions
The UK has a number of agreements that are still under discussion, as well as some trade agreements which are partially applied or have not yet fully taken effect.
The UK agreed a free trade deal with Australia on 14 June 2021, eliminating tariffs on all UK goods and boosting jobs and businesses across the country. This is the first major trade deal negotiated from scratch by the Government.
For countries in the EU Customs Union, the UK has agreed with the EU that all products originating in San Marino and all non-agricultural products originating in Andorra will be treated as originating in the EU under the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement
There are a number of agreements that are still under discussion with countries where trading agreements were in place before 1 January 2021, for these countries trade can take place:
Mutual recognition agreements and Future Trade Deals
These are also the countries that the UK has launched negotiations for new free trade agreements with, which are currently in various stages of discussion:
The UK-US trade negotiations concluded the fifth round of negotiations in October. Former International Trade Secretary Liz Truss spoke with US Trade Representative Katherine Tai in late June regarding the 17 year long Airbus-Boeing dispute. Both sides have agreed to suspend retaliatory tariffs for 5 years. The agreement comes following the UK’s decision to deescalate the dispute by unilaterally suspending retaliatory tariffs on the US at the start of 2021.
Round four of trade negotiations between the UK-New Zealand concluded on 27 April 2021. Negotiators held over 50 sessions during the round, covering all chapters. The talks were positive and productive, with good progress being made across the agreement.
The UK and Singapore have now announced the launch of negotiations on a new ambitious Digital Economy Agreement (DEA). The agreement would look to remove barriers to digital trade and enable UK exporters to expand into high-tech markets. More information is available on gov.uk and
Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP)
On Monday 1st February, the UK submitted a notification of intent letter to begin the CPTPP accession process. The Department for International Trade have now published the UK’s strategic approach for negotiations to join CPTPP. The document sets out the strategic case for joining the trade agreement, the UK’s outline approach to the negotiations, the government’s response to the consultation run on CPTPP and the initial economic scoping assessment for CPTPP membership.
An accession working group will now be set up with all the countries, which will lead onto negotiations. There are no timescales attached to this as bi-lateral negotiations with partner countries could take as much time as needed.
More information on the UK’s Free Trade objectives can be found as they develop on gov.uk.