Free trade with India on agenda of UK Commonwealth summit

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London | Published: February 26, 2017 5:38:17 PM

The UK Commonwealth summit, planned to set free trade deals on course as Britain exits the European Union, will put other leading commonwealth countries including India on course for greater trade liberalisation, a media report said today.

Lord Marland, chairman of the UK-based Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, has planned the summit to set free trade deals on course as Britain exits the European Union (EU). (Reuters)

The UK Commonwealth summit, planned to set free trade deals on course as Britain exits the European Union, will put other leading commonwealth countries including India on course for greater trade liberalisation, a media report said today.

Lord Marland, chairman of the UK-based Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, has planned the summit to set free trade deals on course as Britain exits the European Union (EU).

“The summit, to be attended by Liam Fox, the [UK] international trade secretary, will also seek to put other leading Commonwealth countries such as South Africa, Nigeria and India on course for greater trade liberalisation,” The Sunday Times reported.

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More than 30 ministers and around 60 business chiefs will attend the summit in London on March 9 and 10.

They are expected to sign an accord that will pave the way for a free-trade deal between Britain and countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada after Brexit, the report said.

“We will have more than 30 Commonwealth trade ministers under the same roof for the first time ever. I’m hoping we can initiate a Commonwealth trade accord which will endorse the benefits of free trade,” Lord Marland told the paper.

“There are huge opportunities for Britain. Everyone in the Commonwealth speaks English and it is underpinned by the UK rule of law. We enjoy a lot of cultural links like sport as well,” he said.

Ministers and business leaders will chair events on key issues such as finance, technology, good business practice and attracting inward investment at the event next month.

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