UK to Join the Asia-Pacific Free Trade Pact



UK to Join the Asia-Pacific Free Trade Pact


On the 31st of January, BBC has published an article which states that the United Kingdom will apply to join the Asia-Pacific Free Trade Pact, in other words, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).   

This move of the British government could be related to Brexit that led to the official departure of  Britain from the block on the 1st of January in 2021. 


Could this be the beginning of a new era globally?


What is CPTPP exactly? 

It is a trade deal between Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Chile, Mexico, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Peru, and Vietnam. It has been signed in 2018 in Santiago, Chile, and its point is that its members can trade with each other with more flexibility due to the reduced tariffs on export products. It is a similar trade deal that the European Economic Area (EEA) has got with its own member states.

Joining the block would make Britain’s position more stable in the global market especially if the United States also decides to join the agreement later. 

It would be beneficial for the UK considering the impact Brexit had on the British economy. The Trans-Pacific trade agreement would allow Britain to make British export products like whiskey and cars more easily accessible for countries on the other side of the globe and by the reduced tariffs on products could also create increasing demands for British products.  


Future Relations with the EU and Ireland 

If the UK joins the CPTPP it would automatically generate consequences economically and could influence the relation Britain has with the European Union as well. In that case, the United Kingdom will become even more a solid competitor to the EEA which could become problematic for both sides.

For instance, before the deal that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, made on the 24h of December last year, differences of point-of-views revealed themselves when it came to the regulation of fishing between Britain and France. They eventually resolved the issue with a decent deal that is beneficial for both sides. But, if the United Kingdom joins the CPTPP, what impacts of that move would have on Ireland in the future?

Brexit has put Ireland into a unique position; it can be said that the Emerald Isle has a direct relation with the UK in a geographical sense and because of the Good Friday Agreement

Before the due date of Brexit, the British government announced that they would allow Irish citizens to travel back and forth between Ireland and Britain after Brexit without any restrictions and the need of a visa. On the other hand, the Republic of Ireland is still a member state of the European Union, which means the Emerald Isle takes benefits but also pressure from both sides. 


Of course, the future is unpredictable, but certain events like Brexit and the application of the UK to CPTPP indicate that we globally have reached another milestone, and major change and economic shifts are on the way.  

Aron Debreceni
Aron Debreceni

Aron is a journalist and a student of Utrecht University (NL). He has been doing his own singer-songwriter project 'Aron D' since 2016. Besides music, he is open to write articles about politics, education, health, history and travel.

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