Biden and Sunak unveil new UK-US economic relationship with Atlantic Declaration

Fri 9 Jun 2023
Posted by: Richard Cree
Trade News

UK US flags on flag pole

UK prime minister Rishi Sunak and US president Joe Biden yesterday (8 June) unveiled a new economic partnership, labelled the Atlantic Declaration, to strengthen economic ties between the two countries.

Announcing the partnership following his visit to Washington this week, Sunak said the deal “responds to particular challenges and opportunities we face right now.

“Be in no doubt, the economic relationship between our two countries has never been stronger,” Sunak added.

According to the government, the bilateral partnership takes a different approach to the countries’ economic relationship, recognising the need for speed and agility.

The deal will see the countries partner on advanced technologies, clean energy and critical minerals, Reuters reports.

Green deal

UK firms could gain access to US green funding through plans to mitigate some of the impact of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), with proposals to remove barriers that affected trade in electric vehicle batteries.

The declaration would give buyers of vehicles made using critical minerals processed, recycled or mined by UK companies access to tax credits, reports the BBC. Japan recently signed a similar deal.

Teams from the White House and Downing Street will meet regularly to drive action under the Atlantic Declaration.

Sunak said the agreement, which falls short of a full trade deal would bring benefits “as quickly as possible”.

Data bridge

The declaration also includes a commitment to a “new UK-US Data Bridge” which would allow UK firms to transfer data freely to certified US organisations without paying a levy.

Currently, most UK businesses who want to send data to a service provider or company in the US must have costly contract clauses in place to ensure protection and privacy standards are maintained.

A data bridge would remove that burden, saving 55,000 UK businesses total costs estimated at £92.4m a year.

AI summit

Biden also supported UK plans to set up an international summit on AI safety to be hosted in London in the autumn.

According to Politico, Sunak is seeking to position the UK as a power broker on the subject.

Government sources claim Britain’s departure from the EU will allow the UK to act quickly in response to a rapidly changing market, with the UK steering a path between strict EU regulations and the lighter-touch US approach.

According to the government, the UK ranks third behind the US and China in AI with the sector worth an estimated £3.7bn and employing 50,000 people.