PM G20 press statement: 1 December 2018

Prime Minister Theresa May’s Press Statement at the G20 summit in Argentina.

I would like to start by offering a tribute to President George H.W Bush. Today we remember a great statesman and a true friend of Britain. We send our deepest condolences to the American people and to his family.

As we conclude this meeting of the G20 I would like to congratulate President Macri on Argentin’s Presidency and on the hosting of this summit.

As the first British Prime Minister to visit Buenos Aires I am grateful for the warmth of the welcome I have received. The visit marks an important milestone in the relationship between the UK and Argentina.

Yesterday President Macri and I held productive talks on the way forward in our partnership, including on trade and investment. We also welcomed the agreement on a new commercial air link between the Falklands and São Paulo via Córdoba, a move that shows what we can achieve when we work together.

The UK has always been clear about the importance of the G20 to international economic co-operation and the rules based order. The G20 brings together countries that collectively constitute 85 per cent of gross world product, two-thirds of the world’s population and around half of the world’s land area. It is a vital forum in which we can work together to achieve strong, sustainable and balanced growth.

And ten years on from the first G20 Leaders Meeting this has been a productive Summit. We have made strong commitments to work together on a range of areas including reform of the World Trade Organisation and making the global economy work for everyone. We also discussed other key priorities such as tackling climate change and promoting global health. And I welcome the commitments made on stepping up the fight against modern slavery.

Over the course of the Summit I have had a number of meetings with other world leaders.

As well as discussing bilateral relationships and regional and global security issues this Summit has given me the opportunity to update friends and partners on the agreement we have reached on our exit from the European Union — and I have set out how it represents a good deal for the global economy.

International firms that have invested in UK production or that use European bases to supply the UK market will benefit from the arrangements we have agreed.

And for the first time in more then four decades the UK will have an independent trade policy, playing an active role on the global stage as we take up our seat at the WTO in April 2019.

That this deal sets a path for the UK to a brighter future has been affirmed by the discussions I have had on trade over the past two days with friends and partners making clear that they are keen to sign and implement ambitious free trade agreements with us as soon as possible.

Thank you