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Brexit news – live: Ministers in ‘ferocious row’ over Australia trade deal, as UK faces ‘Italy-style decline’

·1-min read
The City of London is pictured on 8 May, 2021. (REUTERS)
The City of London is pictured on 8 May, 2021. (REUTERS)

Ministers are involved in a “ferocious” row over a potential new UK-Australia trade deal, according to a government source.

The division focuses on whether to give tariff-free access to Australian farmers, something which the international trade secretary Liz Truss favours but which Michael Gove opposes, according to the Financial Times.

Meanwhile, a think tank has warned that the UK economy could see Italy-style stagnation within the next decade because of Brexit and the pandemic.

The Resolution Foundation said that Britain’s economic outlook could resemble Italy more closely than Europe’s powerhouse Germany if it does not rise to the challenges it faces.

“If the UK’s pace of underperformance relative to Germany continues at the same pace in the 2020s, then it will end this decade with GDP per capita much closer to that of Italy than Germany,” it said.

Clive Cowdrey, the Resolution Foundation’s founder, added that Britain’s “recent record of weak productivity, stagnant living standards and high inequality makes a new economic approach desirable”.