U.S. Trade Executive Robert Lighthizer will meet with Britain’s trade minister Liz Truss this week, British government delegates stated Tuesday, as the two aides gear up for post-Brexit trade discussions that could prove contentious.
Lighthizer’s trip to Britain may even include a speaking engagement at the Oxford Union on March 2. His meeting with Truss was confirmed by a spokesperson at the British embassy in Washington.
Truss has stated that Britain would seek far-reaching cuts in U.S. tariffs in trade discussions that might run alongside talks over its future connections with the European Union.
But the British government has yet to reveal formal negotiating objectives for discussion with Washington, a shift that trade consultants say could come soon. PM Boris Johnson’s cabinet has agreed to negotiate goals for the EU final divorce discussions and is about to reveal them Thursday.
Some U.S. delegates, along with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, have stated that a bilateral trade agreement with Britain is the top U.S. trade priority now that China and the U.S. are implementing an Interim trade deal and the U.S. Congress has cleared the latest U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement covering $1.2 trillion in North American trade.
While delegates on both sides are hoping for a settlement before the U.S. election in November, the discussions will be taking place as America negotiates separately with the E.U. on trade.
The U.S. is expected to witness strong resistance in Britain to U.S.-grown genetically altered crops and meat treated with hormones and antibacterial washes.