February 8, 2020 / 8:43 AM / 20 days ago

Raab says Japan trade negotiations to start before spring

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab talks during an interview with Reuters at British Embassy in Tokyo, Japan February 8, 2020. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said on Saturday he expects trade negotiations with Japan to begin before spring, following meetings with the Japanese government in Tokyo.

Raab, who is on a trip to Asia seeking free trade deals following Britain’s exit from the European Union, told Reuters he wants to complete a deal with Japan by year-end.

Earlier in the day the foreign minister said he is seeking an “ambitious” deal with Japan.

The foreign minister said he sees the political will in the EU and Britain for an agreement on a future relationship before the end of the transition period following Britain’s exit from the bloc on Jan. 31.

Reporting by Tim Kelly and Sam Nussey; Editing by Stephen Coates

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