UK strikes ‘historic’ trade deal with Japan

UK strikes ‘historic’ trade deal with Japan

The UK has struck its first big post-Brexit trade deal after reaching a historic agreement with Japan that is expected to increase trade by £15bn a year.

The deal was reached after a compromise on agriculture under which the UK will have access to export quotas for cheese and other products that have not been used by the EU, said negotiators.

The agreement with Tokyo comes at a crucial moment for Prime Minister Boris Johnson as his move to unpick parts of the Brexit withdrawal treaty risks the collapse of trade talks with Brussels.

Parallel trade talks with Donald Trump’s US administration have stalled — to the disappointment of Brexiters — with the UK reluctant to give untrammelled access to US agrifoods.

Toshimitsu Motegi, the Japanese foreign minister, and UK trade secretary Liz Truss confirmed their agreement in principle to the new deal via a teleconference on Friday morning London time. The agreement is expected to be finalised in October.