Report: U.S., U.K., trade rounds today and October, ag talks planned |

Report: U.S., U.K., trade rounds today and October, ag talks planned

The United States and the United Kingdom plan a fourth round of free trade negotiations starting today and a fifth round in October, Inside U.S. Trade reported Friday.

During these rounds, the negotiators plan to discuss market access proposals including agriculture, Inside U.S. Trade said.

But Rep. Ron Kind, D-Wis., who is co-chairing the U.S.-UK interparliamentary working group, told Inside U.S. Trade last week that the negotiations were “still very much in the low-hanging fruit period” with more difficult issues yet to be resolved.

The publication noted that while the U.K. will be establishing its own food safety and agricultural regulatory system now that it has left the European Union, the British public — and many British officials — have been outspoken about their desire for equivalent food safety and animal welfare standards.

U.S. chlorine-washed chicken and hormone-treated beef and the UK’s agreement to honor European Union geographical indicators are expected to be flash points in the negotiations. Kind said, “we’re not clear where the UK is going to bend” in establishing its own regulatory system, which will have significant implications for the talks, especially in areas like agriculture.

“If they do bend towards the EU regulatory system, that’s obviously going to affect the negotiations between us and them,” he said.

“And so we are still not getting very clear guidance just about how they are going to be handling Brexit in their negotiations with the EU.”

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