The United Kingdom is racing against time to compensate for what was lost, and it is negotiating with the Europeans to leave immediately after the announcement of an agreement with the European Union, and the British government announced the signing of a free trade agreement with Turkey, which was waiting for the outcome of negotiations between the British and Europeans.
The agreement remained confined to the offices of the governments of the two countries, because it would not have been possible to conclude it without resolving Britain’s position with the European Union, given the trade agreement that brings Turkey and Europe together. Therefore, the option to exit without an agreement could have caused great harm to the agreement between Turkey and Britain, which would then be forced to perform Customs duties before entering the Turkish market.
The announcement of an agreement between Europe and Britain brought about a state of satisfaction among the Turkish businessmen as well as the British, as it would give them freedom to transport goods and products without imposing any fees between the two parties.
British Foreign Trade Minister Liz Truss did not hide her satisfaction with the completion of this agreement, considering that it would provide safety for thousands of job opportunities in Britain as well as in Turkey, given that the latter is the seventh trade partner of the United Kingdom.
The fruits of Brexit
The British government presents its success in concluding free trade agreements with important countries such as Japan and recently Turkey as one of the benefits of withdrawing from the European Union, which was expressed by Treasury Minister Rishi Sunak when he said that his country has become free to make its economic decision independently.
The trade agreement between the two countries amounts to 18.6 billion pounds sterling, and focuses largely on 3 main sectors, which are the manufacturing industries, the automobile industry and the iron-related industries.
The United Kingdom is Turkey’s second European trading partner after Germany, and for this reason, Turkish and British businessmen breathed a sigh of relief after the news of reaching an agreement between the European Union and Britain, as the lack of agreement would have caused obstruction of the movement of goods between the two countries and the rise in customs duties.
Turkey receives 7.8 billion pounds of British products, especially in the field of technology, cars, financial, energy and telecommunications sectors, which are the sectors in which Britain is expected to be able to invest, given the growth in the Turkish market and the volume of demand for financial and technological services compared to many European markets that It is approaching or heading towards the saturation stage.
Turkey manufactures one out of every 5 large vehicles sold in the British market, while it accounts for a third of Britain’s car exports.
Reading a lot of British economic analyzes, the United Kingdom views Turkey as a good platform for launching into Asia and the Middle East, in addition to the magnitude of its market and the facilities it provides for investment.
The bet is on the agreement in order to increase the volume of trade exchange between the two countries and jump over the barrier of 20 billion pounds sterling, provided that the number will be doubled during the next five years.
The Financial Times describes the agreement as achieving a “win-win” logic, stressing that for years Britain’s dealings with Turkey were pragmatic, in contrast to the strictness with which some European countries deal with Ankara.
It appears from the hospitality with which both Turkey and Britain dealt with the free trade agreement that it does not only achieve economic purposes, but also has political messages for a specific party, the European Union.
Despite the economic warnings of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that his country’s gross domestic product will decline during the next year due to leaving the European Union, he responded that the most important thing is to liberate his country to do what it wants, and the first thing it did was to complete the trade agreement with Turkey, which is in a political crisis. With the European Union.
Britain has for years maintained a distance from the European Union’s policy in dealing with Turkey, on the contrary, it strengthened its relations with it, and it was rare for London to contribute to any decisions or statements against Turkey.
Britain moves with one logic, which is to prove the restoration of sovereignty over its political and economic decision by entering into trade negotiations with many countries, and it has begun to secure the most important for it, such as Japan and Turkey, pending the huge agreement with the United States.
London resisted a lot of European pressure, in particular, to express discontent with Turkish foreign policy through research centers, but the British government distanced itself from this conflict and maintained cordial strings with Ankara.
For its part, Turkey considers this agreement a diplomatic victory in the context of the bone-breaking battle with the Europeans, since reaching a free exchange deal with a country of the size of Britain will further weaken the European position in dealing with Turkey.
The two parties are working to fortify this cooperation by launching towards other, more sensitive areas, especially in the military sector. Three years ago, Turkey and Britain concluded a defense deal worth $ 120 million to contribute to the Turkish warplanes development program, and the agreement was concluded between BAE Systems. (BAE Systems) and Turkish Aerospace Industries.
Britain is counting on this deal in order to promote its defense industry, and Turkey expects to develop the capacity of the air force, as part of the Turkish army’s endeavor to achieve self-sufficiency in the manufacture of war equipment.