Tengku Zafrul: Malaysian exporters set to benefit from preferential tariffs as UK joins CPTPP
KUALA LUMPUR, April 1 — Malaysian exporters are set to benefit from additional preferential access into United Kingdom’s market with the latter's eventual accession into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz said today.
As a result of the trade pact's ministerial meeting yesterday, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti) said this would eventually eliminate import duties on products including palm oil, cocoa, rubber, electrical and electronics and chemicals.
“We congratulate the UK on its impending membership into the CPTPP, which will mark Malaysia’s first free trade arrangement with the sixth largest economy in the world. With the UK’s eventual accession into the CPTPP, Malaysian exporters will stand to benefit from additional preferential access into the UK’s market.
"Upon implementation of the Agreement, the UK will eliminate import duties for a wide range of products including palm oil, cocoa, rubber, electrical and electronics and chemicals, which are of significant export interest to Malaysia,” he said in a statement.
Tengku Zafrul further said that the eventual accession of the UK into the CPTPP will open new opportunities for Malaysian businesses and small-medium enterprises (SMEs), particularly through wider sourcing channels for materials at competitive prices, as well as technical assistance and capacity-building programmes.
"With Malaysia and the UK’s historical trading and investment ties, membership into the CPTPP will further enhance this close relationship and foster greater economic cooperation," he added.
He also said that all parties in the CPTPP will work towards finalising the legal accession instrument, including the signing of the accession protocol scheduled in the third quarter of 2023.
On Twitter, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak also announced the accession and said that the trade deal is set to boost the country's revenue by £1.8 billion (RM9.8 billion).
"We’re signing our first-ever free trade agreement with Malaysia. This gives the UK: access to an economy worth £271 billion in 2021, zero tariffs on UK exports like whisky and cars, more trade and greater share of the market," he wrote.
Yesterday, it was reported that the UK had concluded the 21-month negotiation to be part of the CPTPP, making it the 12th member and set to boost its trade with Malaysia and the wider Indo-Pacific region.
Under the announcement by the CPTPP and the UK ministers on the substantial conclusion of the UK’s accession negotiations into the CPTPP, all parties will work towards finalising the legal accession instrument, including the signing of the accession protocol scheduled in the third quarter of 2023.
The CPTPP is one of the most comprehensive trade deals ever concluded, eliminating 98 per cent of tariffs in a trade zone representing a combined GDP of US$13.5 trillion (RM60 trillion), representing 13.4 per cent of global gross domestic product (GDP) and a population of over 500 million people.