The UK and the U.S. state of Washington signed a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to boost trade and investment.
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Washington State is home to major US business including Amazon, Starbucks, Microsoft and Boeing, and has a GDP roughly equivalent to Poland.
The MoU marks the sixth delivered as part of the UK’s state-level strategy to boost trade with the US and means that the combined GDP of states the UK has MoUs with now totals £2.2 trillion.
Minister for Industry and Economic Security Nusrat Ghani signed the pact in Seattle alongside Washington State Governor Jay Inslee.
The UK has signed MoUs with Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Utah, and now Washington.
Collectively these states imported £5.1 billion of UK goods in 2022.
The Government is actively engaging with further states including Florida, Texas, California, Colorado, and Illinois.
Minister Ghani will also lead a delegation of 35 UK businesses attending the 2023 Boeing Supplier Showcase, handpicked by Boeing to meet with their procurement and supply chain teams.
The event will showcase the best of the UK’s world leading aerospace industry as it continues to drive innovation through new technology, research and design.
Aerospace will be a priority sector under the MoU, which seeks to facilitate more deals between UK and Washington State.
Boeing has spent over £12 billion in the UK supply chain since 2015. Its most recent investment, a £80 million composite research facility in Sheffield, will establish new long-term partnerships and supply chains.
Minister for Industry and Economic Security Nusrat Ghani said: "Our pact with the state of Washington is a win for the UK, opening a door for our businesses to trade more openly and unlock new opportunities in key sectors.
"Each US state is a massive global market in its own right, and many have economies larger than the GDP of whole countries. By notching up our sixth such deal we’ve surpassed the £2 trillion mark for combined GDP of states who’ve done a deal with the UK, with many more in our sights.
"This particular deal will be fantastic for our aerospace industry through investor intros, trade missions, and increasing access to procurement markets. I’m delighted to join Boeing and our handpicked group of innovative UK companies to discuss how Government and industry can work together to create jobs and grow the economy."
Washington State Governor Jay Inslee said: "Today’s [September 25] MOU makes the UK Washington’s latest global partner in trade and innovation focused on clean technology and industry.
"Washington is a leader in sustainable aerospace and aviation, attracting billions in new investments across the state’s urban and rural areas, boosting local economies while slashing our carbon emissions.
"We can’t ebb the tide of climate change and usher in this new future all on our own, it takes partnerships all over the world like the one announced today to realize our full economic potential and help curb carbon emissions worldwide." ■