The UK has struck a free-trade agreement with Japan, marking its first major post-Brexit trade deal.
The deal comes following the conclusion of the eighth round of UK-EU trade talks, in which significant differences remained in negotiations.
The deal, which has been dubbed as the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, was agreed in principle during a video call on Friday morning between UK Trade Secretary Liz Truss and Japan’s Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu.
It is understood that the agreement means that around 99% of UK exports to Japan will be free from tariffs. The deal with the world’s third-largest economy is expected to boost Britain’s GDP by 0.07% over the next 15 years (compared to 2018 levels).
The Department for International Trade has said that among other benefits of the deal, it will be easier for UK tech companies to export and grow, it will be easier for UK firms to secure licences to operate financial services in Japan and it will be quicker to gain visas to travel between the UK and Japan.
Speaking about the new deal, Trade Secretary Liz Truss said the deal “secures new wins for British businesses in our great manufacturing, food and drink, and tech industries,” and she said the deal marked a “historic moment” for the UK.