Image credits: Nancy Hughes
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News Article

First Round of Negotiations for the Mexico-UK FTA Ends

By Paloma Duran | Fri, 07/22/2022 - 12:44

The first round of negotiations between the UK and Mexican governments to create a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) has ended. Once the new agreement comes into force, the export of commercial services from the UK to Mexico is expected to grow significantly.

The first round of negotiations was held in Mexico City and chaired by Ismael Ortiz, Chief Negotiator of Mexico, and Charlotte Heyes, Chief Negotiator of the UK. The talks began July 11 and ended on July 15. The new trade agreement seeks to include contemporary issues identified as priorities for both Mexico and the UK, including digital trade and services, environmental protection, innovation, the circular economy, the commercial integration of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the economic empowerment of women.

Both nations expect to have more than 30 talks to define the scope of access to the goods and services of both countries. “This will comprise the participation of different agencies of the federal administration on issues such as access to markets for goods, rules of origin, customs cooperation and trade facilitation, public procurement, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, as well as technical barriers to trade, services and investment, among others,” the Mexican government said in a press release.

The UK-Mexico FTA carries weight for both countries, since the UK is currently Mexico's 16th-largest trading partner as well as the eighth largest source of foreign investment, with more than 2,000 British companies present in the country, according to data from the Mexican government. In 2021, trade between both nations increased to US$5.1 billion. Meanwhile, Mexico is a major market for UK exporters. Its expanding population means demand for imports is set to grow by 35 percent by 2035. Mexico also has a strategic location in the world, serving as a gateway to the Americas as well as to the dynamic Trans-Pacific region.

Before the UK left the EU, it signed a trade continuity agreement with Mexico to continue their commercial relationship based on the EU-Mexico agreement, as the countries decided to formalize a new, direct agreement later on. Experts say that the new agreement highlights the UK’s intention to increase its relations with the Indo-Pacific countries. Currently, the UK wants to become a member of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), of which Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam are members.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
MBN, El Debta, El Economista, Milenio, Gobierno de México
Photo by:   Nancy Hughes
Paloma Duran Paloma Duran Journalist and Industry Analyst