‘Dealmaking nation!’ Trade Secretary eyes up £140bn bonanza in Brexit triumph

Anne-Marie Trevelyan: Brits will fight back if backed into a corner

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Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan, 52, has said Britain will once again become a “dealmaking nation” as it looks to take advantage of its Brexit freedom by commencing formal negotiations with countries across the world. Ms Trevelyan, who succeeded Liz Truss at the Department for International Trade (DIT) in the September reshuffle, pointed to Canada, India and even the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Speaking to the Telegraph, the Brexit-backing MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed set out her plan to target countries and blocs worth £140billion in bilateral trade last year.

This includes vying to secure the UK its place in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Current negotiations between the UK and the bloc appear to be going well with Trevelyan claiming Britain has passed through these stages “with flying colours”.

There is even hope the UK will be able to accede into CPTPP next year.

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She added: “I want us to really get back to being a dealmaking nation, on the back of both our unique and world-renowned consensus-building skills, of which COP26 obviously has just been an extraordinary demonstration, and the UK’s uniquely respected role in the world across so many levels.”

Ms Trevelyan, who won Berwick-upon-Tweed from the Liberal Democrats in 2015, went on to tell the broadsheet she wants to create a “DIT 2.0” following on from the work of her predecessor.

Liz Truss, 46, secured 68 rollover agreements and bespoke trade deals with Australia, Japan and New Zealand before she was promoted to the Foreign Office.

But Ms Trevelyan, who resigned as a Parliamentary Private Secretary in November 2018 over Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement, will set out details of her approach to changing global trade at the Centre for Policy Studies’ Margaret Thatcher Conference on Trade.

According to the Telegraph, the 52-year-old will stress the UK must “capitalise” on its “amazing strengths”.

Ms Trevelyan will add: “This in turn will create jobs, opportunities and prosperity across every part of our United Kingdom, while championing the cause of free markets, free enterprise and free trade.”

But the Berwick-upon-Tweed MP also pointed out how the Iron Lady can help inspire Britain to push forward once again.

She described Margaret Thatcher as a “global player, global leader, who believed in getting the world to a better place”.

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Trevelyan then argued Mrs Thatcher was right to consider boosting trade and economic activity as one of the best ways to “help the poorest come out of poverty”.

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