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Articles of Interest

Who is America’s top commercial partner? (Hint: It’s not China.)

Brookings, Daniel S. Hamilton, Nonresident Senior Fellow - Foreign PolicyCenter on the United States and Europe, March 21, 2024

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U.S. trade ties with China and Mexico are significant. Yet neither is America’s top commercial partner among foreign countries. That distinction belongs to the United Kingdom. U.S.-U.K. goods lanes are much smaller than U.S. goods highways with China or Mexico. U.S.-U.K. services trade, however, is greater than U.S. services trade with China and Mexico combined—nearly $156 billion in 2022, the last year of available data, versus U.S.-Mexico services trade of $76 billion and U.S.-China services trade of about $68 billion.

The real difference, however, can be traced to massive mutual investment. At $1.74 trillion, U.S.-U.K. investment stock is over 11 times more than U.S.-China investment stock ($154.8 billion) and

over 10 times more than U.S.-Mexico investment stock ($164.1 billion). The real difference, however, can be traced to massive mutual investment. At $1.74 trillion, U.S.-U.K. investment stock is over 11 times more than U.S.-China investment stock ($154.8 billion) and over 10 times more than U.S.-Mexico investment stock ($164.1 billion). U.S. FDI in the U.K. alone is greater than U.S. FDI in the entire Asia-Pacific region. Sales of American and British affiliates in each other’s markets in 2021 ($1.4 trillion) were 21 percent more than the combined sales of U.S. affiliates in all of Latin America (including Mexico) and Latin American affiliates in the United States ($1.1 trillion). Those investments also create jobs: U.K. companies are the largest source of onshored jobs in the United States, just as U.S. companies are the largest source of onshored jobs in the U.K.

 

The dense commercial linkages binding the U.S. with the EU, the U.K., and other European democratic market economies offer a solid geo-economic and geostrategic grounding from which each side of the North Atlantic can address those concerns.

 

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Creating a Rationale: An Analysis of the UK's MoU Initiative with US States

March 22, 2024

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BritishAmerican Business released a report offering a comprehensive analysis of the UK government’s state-level trade and investment strategy with the US. The report follows last week’s signing of the eighth trade pact, with the state of Texas.

Over the past two years, amidst stalled negotiations for a US-UK Free Trade Agreement, the UK has pursued enhanced economic collaboration with the US through a series of Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) signed with individual states. To-date the UK has signed eight trade pacts with Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Utah, Washington State, Florida, and Texas.


BAB’s report offers a deep dive into the structure and objectives of each MoU as well as examining the areas and industries of focus, mechanisms for implementation and how progress will be monitored. The paper argues that, while recent activities initiated by the MoU process suggest that things are going in the right direction, it’s now time to do the hard work to continue to deliver on the many ambitious commitments set out in the agreements.


In its report, BAB commends the UK government for its proactive approach to strengthening trade and economic ties with the US and welcomes recent agreements with economically significant states such as Florida and Texas. BAB would rather see a handful of agreements with larger states than dozens of agreements with smaller states that lack the required focus.

Click here to access the report.

The UK just extended the right to vote to 3.5M people living abroad

On 16th January 2024, an estimated 2.1 million additional British citizens abroad received the right to vote in UK parliamentary elections, making approximately 3.5 million citizens abroad who will be eligible to vote in this year’s UK General Election.

 

Read the article.

Learn more about voting while living abroad.

Why hasn't the UK signed more trade deals?

On leaving the EU, the UK lost access to the European Union’s trade deals with countries including Israel, Mexico and South Korea. But the UK has since negotiated a host of new free trade agreements (FTAs) with Australia, Japan and New Zealand, giving British businesses tariff free access to markets abroad, and agreed to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

 

Read the article.

 

Learn more: A roundup of free trade deals the UK signed in 2023

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