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The Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) analysts note that Brexit trade talks are imminent after the European Union (EU) parliament backed Britain’s departure from the EU late Wednesday.

Key Quotes:

“UK trade talks with the EU will start in earnest in March. Over coming weeks, we will get a better flavour of the structure and priorities of the talks and a sense of each side’s negotiating position.

The Brexiteers’ view has always been that the best deal is achieved by letting it be known that the UK will walk away from talks and that talks are time limited. The EU’s view is that the quality of agreement is more important than meeting arbitrary deadlines. We can expect plenty of robust language.

Our assessment is that Prime Minister Johnson is a pragmatic Brexiteer. Total UK trade in goods with the EU amounts to 20% of nominal GDP. The potential for economic disruption is huge and something Johnson will want to minimise.

The UK simultaneously wants to agree a trade deal with the US, Australia and New Zealand. It will be important to watch whether the UK’s decision to involve Huawei in the build of its 5G networks complicates US trade talks.”