UK/Japan trade deal good for consumers, companies, Johnson tells Abe

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets with Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe on day three of the G7 Summit in Biarritz, France, August 26, 2019. Andrew Parsons/Pool via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told his outgoing Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe that a free trade deal between their two countries would provide certainty for companies and consumers, his Downing Street office said on Wednesday.

Britain and Japan are in advanced stages of trade negotiations. After leaving the European Union on Jan. 31, Britain is trying to strike bilateral deals with trading partners, which it was not able to do as an EU member.

“The Prime Minister and Prime Minister Abe welcomed the progress that UK and Japanese negotiators have made towards a bilateral Free Trade Agreement,” Downing Street said.

“The Prime Minister reiterated how important the agreement would be for providing certainty and continuity for Japanese and British companies and consumers.”

Reporting by William James and Estelle Shirbon; editing by Stephen Addison