Donald Trump and Boris Johnson to agree timetable for trade talks

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Donald Trump and Boris Johnson will give the green light to trade talks when they meet at the G7 summit in France this weekend.

The President and Prime Minister will agree to start work immediately on drawing up a timetable for negotiations. This is the first major step towards getting an all-important post-Brexit deal.

The so-called road map will be finalised by officials in the next few weeks.

‘It will set out a series of deadlines for how trade talks should progress in the next 12 months. The PM and the President will then shake hands on the plan when they meet in New York in the last week of September at the UN General Assembly.

A source said: ‘Both sides are in agreement that a trade deal is a priority and want to get moving quickly on getting one done.’

Mr Trump and Mr Johnson will hold one-on-one talks on the sidelines of the G7 summit in Biarritz, France, this weekend.

President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Boris Johnson (pictured) will agree to start work immediately on drawing up a timetable for negotiations. This is the first major step towards getting an all-important post-Brexit deal.

President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Boris Johnson (pictured) will agree to start work immediately on drawing up a timetable for negotiations. This is the first major step towards getting an all-important post-Brexit deal.

President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Boris Johnson (pictured) will agree to start work immediately on drawing up a timetable for negotiations. This is the first major step towards getting an all-important post-Brexit deal.

It will be the first face-to-face meeting for the two leaders since Mr Johnson took office. The pair have held weekly telephone conversations since the Prime Minister entered Downing Street four weeks ago.

After their latest call earlier this week, Mr Trump tweeted: ‘Great discussion with Prime Minister Boris Johnson today. We talked about Brexit and how we can move rapidly on a US-UK free trade deal.

‘I look forward to meeting with Boris this weekend at the G7 in France!’

Mr Trump has said he believes he and Mr Johnson are ‘very much aligned’ and ‘feel very good about each other’.

‘I think we’ll make a fantastic and big trade deal with the UK,’ the US President said after a separate telephone conversation with Mr Johnson last week.

‘We should do much more business than we’re doing with the UK. We’re going to have a great trade deal with UK and that’s moving along rapidly.’ Earlier this month International Trade Secretary Liz Truss flew to Washington for talks with senior officials including US trade representative Robert Lighthizer.

It will be the first face-to-face meeting for the two leaders since Mr Johnson took office. The pair have held weekly telephone conversations since the Prime Minister entered Downing Street four weeks ago

It will be the first face-to-face meeting for the two leaders since Mr Johnson took office. The pair have held weekly telephone conversations since the Prime Minister entered Downing Street four weeks ago

It will be the first face-to-face meeting for the two leaders since Mr Johnson took office. The pair have held weekly telephone conversations since the Prime Minister entered Downing Street four weeks ago

She has described a UK-US trade agreement as a ‘golden opportunity’ and has made it is her top priority.

A trade deal is expected to be discussed when US Vice President Mike Pence visits London on September 5.

However, senior figures in the Democratic Party in Washington have warned they could block any deal if the Good Friday Agreement is undermined.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer earlier this week wrote to US secretary of state Mike Pompeo warning that Congress could work on a cross-party basis to block a deal if a No Deal Brexit introduces a hard border on the island of Ireland.

A copy of the letter was also sent to Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

Mr Schumer called for the Trump administration to stop ‘over-promising an unconditional and unrealistic’ post-Brexit trade agreement with the UK.

He added he will work with Democratic colleague Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House of Representatives – and Republicans – to block any deal that threatens the Belfast Agreement.

In his letter, Mr Schumer said: ‘While Britain is a unique and valued ally of our nation, as the Democratic Leader of the United States Senate, which would consider prospective new bilateral trade agreements, I write to express my inveterate opposition to any prospective trade deal with UK that either undermines the landmark Good Friday Agreement or facilitates a return to a hard border.

‘As we approach the 50th anniversary of the traumatic events that precipitated the long and difficult period known as “The Troubles”, all stakeholders would do well to reflect on the hate, violence, injustice, lawlessness and societal upheaval of that time – and of the extraordinary transformation ushered in by the Good Friday Agreement.

‘America had a proud role in facilitating and brokering the Good Friday Agreement, and America remains a vital guarantor of it. This is no small responsibility and it must not be shirked.’

Some Brexit supporters believe a free trade deal with the US could help make up for any reduction in trade with the EU.

Last year, Britain did almost half its trade with the EU. The US accounted for 18 per cent of UK exports and 11 per cent of imports.

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