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Brexit could give SA-UK trade agreement more scope

Nigel Casey, the British High Commissioner to South Africa, has reassured that his people are working hard to ensure there is no disruption in trade between Southern Africa and the United Kingdom after Brexit.

There may also be more scope for areas and products that weren't previously included in trade deals under the banner of the European Union (EU), he told the Cape Town Press Club on Monday. "Our number one objective and my personal highest priority since [being appointed] last April is to avoid any disruption to existing trade.

"We have with South Africa a healthy, balanced trading relationship and [are] well aware that the UK is an especially important export market for some of South Africa’s high-profile exports - cars, wine, fruit, vegetables - much of which is produced here in the Western Cape."

Casey detailed his thoughts on trade with African countries and what was happening behind the scenes to plan for the end of the anticipated Brexit transitional period in December 2020.

According to, he said he was pleased to say that very good progress had been made in producing an agreement with Southern African Customs Union countries (South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini [Swaziland] and Mozambique) that replicated the current deal with the EU.

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