The UK will sign its first US state-level trade deal today, with an agreement to be signed with Indiana.
The “Trade and Economic Development Memorandum of Understanding” with Indiana aims to reduce red tape for British companies wishing to trade or operate with the Midwestern state.
The agreement will not reduce tariffs or quotas on goods going in either direction, as this can only be done through a trade agreement with the US federal government.
A statement from the Department for International Trade said the agreement would make it easier for British professionals to work in Indiana, and vice versa, through mutual recognition of qualifications.
Deputy Trade Minister Ranil Jayawardena said: “With the signing of this MoU, UK businesses can capitalize on great opportunities for collaboration in areas such as innovation and manufacturing.”
International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan has tried to sign trade partnerships with individual US states, after talks for a trade deal with the White House stalled last year.
Nick Thomas-Symonds, Labor Secretary of State for International Trade, pointed out that the 2019 Conservative election manifesto promised a post-Brexit US trade deal to be signed by 2022.
“It is important to reduce barriers to trade with individual states, but the government must put in place a formal process for a thorough review of this Memorandum of Understanding in Parliament and ensure that exporters here in the UK receive the support they need to take advantage of new opportunities,” he said.