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UK and Turkiye launch talks on a new free trade deal

March 14, 2024 at 12:07 pm

Britain’s Business and Trade Secretary, and Minister for Women and Equalities Kemi Badenoch in Downing Street, central London, on March 13, 2024. [Photo by PETER NICHOLLS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images]

The UK and Turkiye will formally launch negotiations on a new Free Trade Agreement (FTA) on Thursday with a view to including services as well as goods in a new deal.

Britain already has an FTA with Turkiye, which was rolled over when the UK left the European Union, but a review by both sides last year concluded that there was room for improvement under a new deal.

“We already have a thriving trade relationship that will only get stronger with a new, modernised trade deal,” said British Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch. She added that a new deal could give Britain’s services sector “a competitive edge in this growing market and has the potential to support jobs across the UK.”

The trade ministry said the first round of negotiations with Turkiye, a NATO ally, is expected to take place in the summer.

Any deal could increase access for British consumers to Turkish goods such as bulgur wheat and tomatoes, as well as provide opportunities for British firms to increase services industry exports.

Britain is currently in trade talks with the likes of India, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and South Korea. Talks on a new FTA with Canada were put on hold earlier this year after the two sides failed to agree on removing barriers for agriculture.

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