Department for International Trade officials are close to agreeing on a mandate to begin talks with Mexico. A Mexico free trade agreement, the Express understands, will boost the UK economy by billions of pounds and will slash tariffs on automotive, pharmaceutical, textiles and agricultural products.
A signed deal will also support jobs and opportunities across the UK in industries like digital, data and services.
Ministers recently completed a call for input to ask for views from the public, businesses and other stakeholders, which will help to shape the UK negotiation approach.
Sources also said that the Mexico deal would be an “important building block” to membership of the £9 trillion Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which includes Mexico.
International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan hosted the first round of talks with member countries last month, which included Canada, Japan, Singapore and Brunei, stressing it was a “big milestone’ on a path to forging ‘stronger links both with old friends.”
A UK Government source said: “The UK’s departure from the EU will allow us to shape our own trade deals with leading economies of the future.
“A Mexico agreement will build on our continuity agreement we signed last year to secure access for most British goods and services.”
The Department for International Trade added in their call for input: “Stronger trade links with Mexico support Britain joining the CPTPP – a club of dynamic economies around the Pacific Rim – and will unlock new opportunities for British businesses in untapped markets of the future.
“Our businesses will gain a competitive edge from being able to choose the best trading terms, whether that’s under CPTPP or our new trade deals.”
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The deal which was spearheaded by now Foreign Secretary Liz Truss will slash tariffs on goods including chocolate, clothing and gin.
However, Britain’s automotive industry is expected to benefit the most from the landmark agreement with cars being the UK’s biggest export to New Zealand, with £133million-worth sold in 2020.
British consumers are also expected to widely benefit from a large choice of New Zealand Lamb whilst 20p will be slashed off leading brands of Kiwi wine.
The deal is expected to mirror a similar format to the Australia agreement signed in June following the G7 Summit in Cornwall.