Reality check: what is the amount of customs duties on trade with Africa? Until the UK decided to leave the EU, it negotiated with South Africa under an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and some Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states. The EU-SADC EPA entered into force on 10 October 2016. Under this agreement, the EU has eliminated all or part of the tariffs on South African exports, with the exception of aluminium and various agricultural products. The EU insists that the UK pretty much comply with these rules – so that British companies don`t get any benefits – but the UK government says it wants freedom to leave. “The UK-SACU+M EPA offers an excellent platform to strengthen cooperation in areas of mutual interest,” he said. “As we approach the end of the transition period, we must first focus on the successful implementation of the EPA. But once we have done so, the agreement will have mechanisms in place to think about how to improve it, in order to further increase mutual ambition. And of course, there are many ways to develop and diversify this relationship by investing in sectors such as infrastructure (including mining), energy, renewable energy, agricultural technologies, financial and professional services, green economy, defense, and security. With the UK`s decision to leave the EU, this meant that it would no longer be part of the EU-SADC EPA. This in turn meant that trade between SADC countries and the UK would no longer benefit from the preferential conditions that existed under the EU-SADC EPA. The outcome of these discussions will have an impact on the South African economy, particularly on trade. The EU, as a regional bloc, is South Africa`s largest global trading partner and South Africa is the EU`s largest trading partner in Africa.
South Africa has a long-standing and extensive trade relationship with the United Kingdom. Before leaving the EU, Britain was South Africa`s second largest trading partner in the EU regional community after Germany. The country is also South Africa`s fourth largest export market, behind China, Germany and the United States. The UK government is working on new deals to replace EU trade deals after Brexit. What the end of the transition period between the UK and the EU means for trade between the UK and South Africa In reality, it is impossible to say what could happen, but it highlights the complexity of cross-cutting trade negotiations. Zero-inch deals can still be made as part of a continuity agreement, but there could be physical problems. Agreement was also reached on an integrated agenda to address in the future areas of interest that could not be resolved during the negotiations. These include issues of market access, regional cumulation, export taxes, technical barriers to trade, geographical indications and electronic certifications. As has already been said, trade negotiations are complex and require time and resources.
The UK is trying to replicate the effects of existing EU agreements when they no longer apply to the UK. After its exit from the European Union, the United Kingdom plans to negotiate trade agreements to replace and complement the trade agreements in which it participated as a member of the European Union`s customs union. From October 2020 [updated], the UK has concluded a new trade agreement (with Japan) [a] to continue 20 existing agreements (EU) and new negotiations are ongoing. . . .