‘Brexit Britain is on the rebound!’ Liz Truss responds to the SNP’s criticism of the EU trade accord.
BREXIT Britain’s commerce with the EU is “bouncing back,” according to Liz Truss, who praised the UK’s new global chances this morning.
Despite some “initial challenges” in commerce with the continent following the conclusion of the transition period, the International Trade Secretary conceded that businesses were learning to adjust to the new trade deal. Ms Truss made her remarks as new data released last week showed that in May, British goods exports to the European Union reached their highest level since October 2019.
According to the Office of National Statistics, goods exports to the European Union grew to £14 billion pounds in May, excluding precious metals.
The figures are nearly double what they were in January.
The conclusion of the EU transition period and the spread of the Kent coronavirus strain prompted extensive stockpiling at the start of the year.
Imports from the EU have also increased following a dip at the start of the year, but they remain significantly lower than those from the rest of the world.
Ms Truss told MPs in the Commons, “We’ve seen commerce with the EU bounce back after some initial challenges.”
“There has been a troubling surge of protectionism in recent years,” she said, promising that the UK’s capacity to establish its own trade deals outside of the EU would lead to new opportunities.
“I’m happy that the UK is leading the way in trade liberalisation, securing new trade deals to provide new jobs and prosperity as we work to recover from Covid.”
Following criticism from the SNP’s Brendan O’Hara, the International Trade Secretary expressed optimism in the comeback of UK-EU trade.
“Six months into Brexit, the sea of opportunity promised to the fish producers of my Argyll and Bute area has turned out to be a swamp of bureaucracy,” he remarked.
“They all report dropping prices, lost markets, labor shortages, and huge transportation and logistical challenges, in addition to a mound of paperwork and red tape.
“They are in the midst of an existential crisis six months after Brexit.”
In April, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) provided £10 million in financial assistance to fisheries as businesses adjusted to new post-Brexit restrictions.
Officials expect that when businesses adapt to the new trade standards, frictions created by paperwork at the border will decrease.
While recent data suggests that exports to the EU are improving, fisheries continue to struggle.
“Brinkwire Summary News,” by Barrie Deas.