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Britain says trading partners underestimate the no-deal-Brexit risk

FILE PHOTO: British Foreign Minister Liam Fox arrives on London's Downing Street on 13 September 2018. REUTERS / Hannah McKay

LONDON (Reuters) – The UK has no free trade agreements with other countries by March unless the Union leaves a deal as current trading partners underestimate the chance of a no-deal Brexit, Trade Secretary Liam Fox, said Wednesday.

Britain is trying to replicate trade agreements with non-EU countries when leaving the EU. If it breaks off with a deal, a transitional period will begin that will maintain existing trade agreements until the end of 2020.

"It may not be possible to complete all trades, as some countries still do not believe that a deal is possible," said Fox in an interview with the BBC in Davos.

"No deal is a real possibility, and you have to prepare for it, because if you do not prepare, there might be a disruption in the trading relationship, even if it's only a temporary basis."

Reporting by Alistair Smout; Arrangement of Guy Faulconbridge

Our standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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