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British business chief warns against swift US trade deal


A headlong rush into a “politically attractive” trade deal with the US risks exposing British companies to hostile takeovers and handing American firms the upper hand, one of Britain’s leading business figures has warned.

Adam Marshall, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, said he was “distinctly uneasy” about the idea of a swift free-trade deal. Writing in the Observer, he called on the government to focus on small “quick wins” to free up trade between Britain and the US. He said the pressing need is for a deal with the EU.

His warning came as Liam Fox, the international trade secretary, prepares to travel to the US on Monday to begin talks about a possible deal. There are already concerns among trade unions on both sides of the Atlantic over the prospects of a quick deal, with calls for far more details to be released about the areas being considered for inclusion in the agreement. However, tackling some of the smaller barriers to trade is understood to be on Fox’s agenda for the trip. Full Story

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