January 31 According to a report by the Central News Agency, the British government will formally apply for joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (CPTPP) on February 1.
In response, Japan, which will chair the CPTPP in 2021, will hold tripartite ministerial talks with the United Kingdom and New Zealand.
Liz Truss, the British Secretary of State for International Trade, is expected to apply on February 1, and formal negotiations will begin in the spring of 2021.
Britain is the first non-original member state to apply for membership, and if successfully joined, it will become the second largest economy after Japan.
The CPTPP signed the agreement in 2018, and the current member countries are Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Brunei, Mexico, Chile and Peru.
The market population of 11 member countries is about 500 million, and the combined GDP of the member countries accounts for about 13% of the total global economy.
Britain continued to negotiate free trade agreements with many countries before formally leaving the European Union. However, the volume of trade between the UK and the CPTPP is still relatively small compared with the EU in the past.
In 2019, for example, CPTPP member countries accounted for only 8.4% of UK exports.
However, joining the CPTPP allows for the UK to receive zero tariffs on specific goods exported, such as whisky exported to Malaysia and cars exported to Canada.
In the face of the UK’s intention to apply for membership in the CPTPP, Japan, as the chairman of the CPTPP in 2021, will hold tripartite ministerial talks between Japan, the United Kingdom and New Zealand on February 1.
It is reported that after the UK formally applies for accession, a CPTPP committee composed of member states will be held as soon as possible to coordinate the launch of the UK accession negotiations.
the other hand, after Brexit, the bilateral economic cooperation agreement between Japan and the United Kingdom entered into force on January 1, 2021.