The UK government initiated a new dialogue with South America to strengthen investment, bilateral trade and prepare the ground for potential Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) —based on existing treaties with the EU— following the Brexit.
Dialogue seeks to strengthen ties with three Andean countries: Peru, Colombia, and Ecuador.
European Commission studies have determined that 90% of world economic growth —over the next two decades— will occur outside the European Union (EU).
In this sense, British Trade Policy Minister Greg Hands
is currently in Peru to meet with counterpart Eduardo Ferreyros.
Hands announced that the British government —through United Kingdom Export Finance (UKEF)
— will support British-Peruvian trade worth up to 4 billion pounds (about US$5 billion).
This way, it offered billions of additional pounds in funding available to UK exporters, as well as buyers of British goods and services in the Inca country.
On the other hand, British Investment Minister Mark Garnier
met with Ecuadorian Minister Pablo Campana last Monday in London.
Dialogue and business relations
Peru's Foreign Trade and Tourism Minister Eduardo Ferreyros said Hands' visit marks the beginning of what will be a "very fruitful dialogue" to ensure the continuity of the preferential trade relationship.
"The UK is a very important partner for Peru in Europe, and we hope to boost trade and investment ties, as new opportunities for our business arise," he expressed.
Trade in goods and services between the United Kingdom and South American countries reached 12.4 billion pounds in 2015.
The UK's largest exports to the region included distillates, automobiles, and medical equipment, while major imports included coffee, nuts and fruit.
Finally, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox
visited Colombia last month and met with local counterpart Maria Lorena Gutierrez.
He also announced that UK Export Finance's available funding for trade with Colombia doubled to 4.5 billion pounds.