UK signs trade deals with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein

Industry News | | MIC Customs Solutions |

An FTA between the UK and Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein has been signed in London.


The UK has formally signed a combined free trade agreement (FTA) with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, supporting trade relationships worth a total of £21.6 billion a year.

It was signed in London and followed an agreement in principle confirmed last month that will cut tariffs on key exports and promote the use of digital tools to allow goods to move seamlessly across international borders.

The UK government described the agreement as the "most advanced trade deal that Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein have ever signed", highlighting "gold standards" on issues such as digital services, mobile roaming and business travel in addition to its trade benefits.

Among its provisions will be continued quota-free access for British exports and the removal of tariffs of up to 277 percent on products such as cheese and seafood. The FTA also  recognises the protected status of certain UK wines and spirits, such as Scotch whisky.

Digital provisions including electronic documents, contracts and signatures will result in less paperwork for goods moving between the UK and the three nations, which will cut red tape and save firms time and money.

Norway's minister of trade and industry Iselin Nybø said the agreement marks an important step in her country's relationship with the UK, which is one of Norway's most important international markets.

She added: "I am proud that we have concluded an ambitious and comprehensive free trade agreement, which will provide predictability and opportunities for our businesses, investors, students and workers in the years to come."

Industry groups also welcomed the news, with Jonathan Geldart, director general at the Institute of Directors (IoD), saying the FTA will give businesses the reassurances they need to trade with these European markets.

"The IoD has long championed the need for continuity and cooperation following Brexit. This deal will help to deliver that stability, as well as liberalize trade in areas like digital and services," he said.