Today, I asked Liam Fox MP a question on the difficulties the UK could face when securing a trade deal with EU. A transcript is below along with a video of the question during the session.
Stephen Kinnock: In terms of the time and complexity around the CETA deal, do you not think that that will reflect on our ability to secure a free trade deal and, given the difficulties that have been experienced now, don’t you think the same would be applied to the UK, in spades?
Liam Fox: Well as I said, if you look at other major treaties, as the one I gave an example of being NAFTA it was negotiated in a much shorter time and there are a whole range of different possible deals for the UK. There is the ability to adopt, whether as a complete or a transitional form the free trade agreements that the European Union already has; in my view it would be to our mutual advantage to consider those along with the European Union to ensure that there is no distortion of market in which case that could be done in a relatively short time, when it comes to the negotiation of free trade agreements where there is no agreement with the European Union at all, at the present time that would be a case by case basis and I think would be on the basis of how much commonality we already had. I can think of some countries where that might be less and some where that might be more and I think that the time will be very variable and we will want to consider as we look at those the market value, where we have already sufficient commonality to be able to proceed on a shorter time scale and where there might be strategic objectives also for the country, so there are a number of variables to be taken into account.