British trade minister Liz Truss speaks to Reuters after signing a free trade agreement with Singapore, in Singapore December 10, 2020. REUTERS/Pedja Stanisic

Aug 28 (Reuters) – Britain aims to conclude negotiations to join the trans-Pacific trade group by the end of 2022, the Financial Times reported on Saturday, citing International Trade Secretary Liz Truss.

“We will be able to have concluded negotiations by the end of next year,” Truss told the newspaper.

She argued that the deal would help Britain benefit from economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

Britain received a green light in June to start the process of joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership of 11 countries – Japan, Canada, Australia, Vietnam, New Zealand, Singapore, Mexico, Peru, Brunei, Chile and Malaysia. read more

Truss told the FT she expects trade between the United States and Britain could be liberalised if Washington rejoined the group. Then-President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of a forerunner of the trade pact in 2017.

“The United States was one of the initial parties in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and the new administration has not indicated they want to join it. But who knows what might happen in the future,” she said.

Reporting by Anirudh Saligrama in Bengaluru; Editing by William Mallard

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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