John Bolton, Donald Trump’s national security adviser, has said the UK will be ”top of the queue” for a trade deal with the US, following its exit from the EU.
“People who worry about the United Kingdom crashing out of the European Union – they are going to crash right into the United States,” Mr Bolton said, in an apparent attempt to soothe fears about a no-deal Brexit.
“Honestly from the United States, and for that matter the United Kingdom, I don’t understand why you would want to get out of the European Union and not be able to set your own rules.”
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“That’s what independence means, and that’s what the president wants to do,” he said in an interview with Sky News.
“He thinks that the EU rules discriminate against American trade, and he wants a free, fair, a reciprocal trade deal with Great Britain.”
Mr Bolton did not provide any specific details about a potential trade deal but pointed out Mr Trump’s enthusiasm for Brexit.
He described the US leader as “eager for the will of the British people to be carried out … he is even more eager to do a trade deal”.
The UK is yet to agree a deal for its exit with the EU. It will remain in the organisation until at least 12 April.
The US set out its negotiating objectives for any possible trade deal earlier this year. These suggest that the UK will not enjoy softer treatment compared to other US allies in any trade deal.
The blueprint indicates that the nation would demand greater access to food markets, allowing it to sell the UK chlorine-washed chicken and hormone-pumped beef.
Immediately after the document was published, Theresa May’s spokesperson attempted to calm the fears, insisting the government had ruled out lowering food standards in a future trade deal.