Press Release

Published: 18 April 2023

How Best to Maximise the Impact of State MOUs at a Time When UK-US Trade Talks Should be Back on the Agenda​

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Contact: Dominic Parker, Senior Communications and Media Manager | 020 7290 9882 | +44 7500 115352

BritishAmerican Business (BAB) has today launched its latest  policy paper, Taking Trade Local – The Business Case for State-Level Trade and Investment Cooperation, offering recommendations to the UK government to ensure its MoU strategy with US states can deliver real benefits to businesses on both sides of the Atlantic.

The release of the report coincides with the UK signing its fourth trade and economic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Oklahoma, adding to those with Indiana and North and South Carolina.  

BAB makes the business case for this initiative, and recommends that the UK government focus its attention on four key areas to ensure state-based MoUs deliver lasting impact and tangible benefits.

Take a strategic approach

We encourage the UK government to set out a strategic approach for its engagement with US states. This should include clearly articulating the goals, scope, and deliverables of the campaign.

Define the scope

The UK government must clearly communicate with businesses and other stakeholders what these agreements include and will accomplish. There needs to be an understanding that MoUs are done in parallel, not in place of, trade discussions with the US federal goverment.

The importance of utilisation

BAB welcomes the UK government’s focus on MoU utilisation, making sure these agreements continue to provide real benefits for businesses and actively identify new opportunities that lead to an increase in trade and investment.

Match resources with scope and ambition

It is imperative that the UK government’s ambition with this campaign is matched to the resources available to the UK government teams in the US, prioritising both the states and the opportunities that will deliver the most value.

Commenting on the release of the report, BritishAmerican Business CEO Duncan Edwards said: 

“With no real progress on a US UK FTA since 2020, the UK government’s state-level engagement makes good business sense. These MoUs, when crafted with ambition and executed with intent, can deliver great value to business and local communities. They can also help change the mood music, proving one successful MoU at a time, that there is a need to re-ignite trade talks at the highest level in the future.

“It’s important that the MoUs are more than a series of good intentions. The UK government must resource its state-level campaign effectively to ensure success on the ground and tangible benefits for business.”

To read the White Paper, click here.

About BritishAmerican Business

BritishAmerican Business is the leading transatlantic trade association incorporating the British-American Chamber of Commerce in the US and the American Chamber of Commerce in the UK.

We are committed to strengthening the economic corridor between the United States and the United Kingdom by supporting policies and actions that protect and enhance the environment for transatlantic trade and investment on behalf of our members.

We convene and serve a growing network of companies and business leaders through networking opportunities, bespoke programming and marketing platforms.

We actively promote trade and investment and support those who make the transatlantic corridor part of their business growth ambition.