The statement made by Anne-Marie Trevelyan, the Secretary of State for International Trade, in the House of Commons on 19 April 2022.
The first round of UK-Canada free trade agreement negotiations began on 28 March and concluded on 1 April. A delegation of 27 Canadian officials undertook technical talks in London with a further 133 joining the talks virtually.
During this first round, talks focused on reviewing the current trade agreement, sharing recent policy developments in the UK and Canada, and building a shared understanding of each other’s overall positions in every area expected to be covered in the new free trade agreement. Technical discussions were held across 34 policy areas over 50 separate sessions.
Both countries share a strong desire to secure an ambitious, modern and comprehensive deal that goes further than the existing trade continuity agreement, removing existing trade barriers and creating new opportunities for business in the UK and Canada. The negotiations are a key opportunity to deepen UK-Canada trade, already worth £20 billion, and to work with a like-minded partner on a range of inclusive and future facing trade policy such as supporting women’s economic empowerment, SMEs, innovation, climate and environment.
The second round of official level negotiations is due to take place in June 2022.
We remain clear that any deal the Government strike must be in the best interests of the British people and the economy.
The Government will keep Parliament updated as these negotiations progress.