President-elect Donald Trump has promised that the U.S. will sign a quick trade deal with the UK after the Brexit negotiations are concluded.
In an interview with former leave campaigner and cabinet minister Michael Gove for the Times newspaper, Mr Trump said that the UK was “so smart for getting out”. He went on to say “We’re gonna work very hard to get it done quickly and done properly. Good for both sides.”
Mr Trump’s words were in sharp contrast to outgoing President Barack Obama’s remarks during the EU referendum campaign, where he famously said that “the UK would be at the back of the queue” for any potential trade deal should it leave the EU.
The President-elect, who will be inaugurated on Friday in Washington, went on to criticise Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel’s stance on immigration calling it “obsolete”.
Mr Trump later said “I think she made one very catastrophic mistake and that was taking all of these illegals, you know, taking all of the people from wherever they come from. And nobody even knows where they come from,”
Later in the interview with Mr Gove, he turned his comments to NATO and called for more member states to commit to the target of spending the 2% of their respective national incomes on defence, a spending target that the UK is meeting and remains one of the few nations to do so.
With his inauguration looming, UK prime minister Theresa May will be keen to ensure that Mr Trump delivers on his promise to sign a trade deal with the UK, as this would be a boost to the economy and future success post Brexit.