The UK is engaged in negotiations with the Southern African Customs Union (Sacu) to replicate the existing economic partnership agreement which the customs union has with the EU. This is to ensure that there is an agreement in place in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal, though it will not have any force and effect in a negotiated withdrawal as transitional arrangements — including the continuation of the economic partnership agreement between Sacu and the EU — will apply until end 2020 or end 2022 at the very latest. Having an agreement in place would provide clarity and certainty to Southern Africa and UK exporters, British high commissioner Nigel Casey said during a talk to the Cape Town Press Club Monday.

“The good news is that we are close to completing that process,” he said. Casey said the UK wanted to have a deal with Sacu in place in the event of a “no deal” Brexit. The UK is due to leave the EU with or without a deal on March 29, 2019. With no deal in...

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