US trade deal: Boris faces off with Biden today as PM shows might of Brexit Britain

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US trade deal: Boris faces off with Biden today as PM shows might of Brexit Britain

At 2.30pm, the Prime Minister will chair a meeting of world leaders via video link on the response to the coronavirus crisis. Mr Johnson is hoping

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At 2.30pm, the Prime Minister will chair a meeting of world leaders via video link on the response to the coronavirus crisis. Mr Johnson is hoping to persuade the G7 to commit to speeding up the development of vaccines for any future pandemic and to provide more Covid jabs to poorer countries.

As he seeks to present the UK as leading the world on the issue, Mr Johnson said ahead of today’s meeting: “Perhaps more than ever, the hopes of the world rest on the shoulders of scientists and over the last year, like countless times before, they have risen to the challenge.

“The development of viable coronavirus vaccines offers the tantalising prospect of a return to normality, but we must not rest on our laurels.

“As leaders of the G7 we must say today: never again.”

President Biden has been clear he is no fan of the UK’s exit from the EU.

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However, Mr Johnson is eager to strike a free trade deal with America by persuading Mr Biden Britain is an outward-looking, internationalist country.

This afternoon’s meeting will grant the Prime Minister his first real opportunity to showcase the might of Brexit Britain.

Downing Street is planning to use the G7, as well as the COP26 climate change conference being hosted by the UK in Glasgow later this year, to prove Britain shares the same priorities as President Biden.

Mr Johnson was the first European leader to get a call from the US President following his inauguration in January.

The pair agreed “containing Covid-19, and ensuring global health security” were key shared focuses.

A statement from the White House following the call on January 23 said: “The President conveyed his intention to strengthen the special relationship between our countries and revitalise transatlantic ties, underscoring the critical role of NATO to our collective defence and shared values.

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“President Biden also noted the importance of cooperation, including through multilateral organisations, on shared challenges such as combatting climate change, containing COVID-19, and ensuring global health security.”

Significantly, in discussing ways to “strengthen the special relationship”, the pair also spoke about trade.

A Downing Street spokesperson said following the call: “They also discussed the benefits of a potential free trade deal between our two countries, and the Prime Minister reiterated his intention to resolve existing trade issues as soon as possible.”

Mr Johnson has inited world leaders to Cornwall in June to attend an in-person G7 summit.

In somewhat of a coup for the UK, the summit is expected to be President Biden’s first overseas visit.

No10 is hoping to attach a visit to London on to Mr Biden’s trip for the Cornwall summit in its continued bid to win over the US President.

Mr Biden has already warned he has no intention of agreeing any free trade deals until America’s priorities are in order.

Speaking in December six weeks before he took office, the 26th President said: “I’m not going to enter any new trade agreement with anybody until we have made major investments here at home and in our workers and in education.”



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