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Donald Trump has said he plans to be “very involved” with the UK because “you don’t hear the word Britain anymore”.
The US President also said another Scottish independence referendum would be “terrible”, adding: “They just went through hell”.
It comes after he posted a tweet suggesting a trade deal between the US and UK could be “very big and exciting”.
Asked whether he could say more about trade talks between the two nations in the run-up to Brexit, President Trump said: “No, but I can say that we’re going to be very involved with the U.K.
“I mean, you don’t hear the word Britain anymore. It’s very interesting. It’s like, nope.”
He added: “Is Scotland going to go for the vote, by the way? You don’t see it. It would be terrible. They just went through hell.
“One little thing, what would they do with the British Open if they ever got out? They’d no longer have the British Open.
“Scotland. Keep it in Scotland.”
Talk then turned to golf courses, with the US President – who owns luxury golf courses in Ayrshire and Aberdeenshire – speaking about golfer Jordan Spieth.
Asked again about post-Brexit talks with Britain, President Trump: “We have a very good relationship. I have a very good relationship with the prime minister. And we are absolutely looking to do a major trade deal.”
Asked whether the deal will kick in as soon as Brexit happens, President Trump said: “As soon as it’s appropriate to have it kick in, absolutely. And it’ll be a big trade deal – much, much more business than we do right now, many, many times.
“I mean, one of the things that – I have a very good relationship with the EU people and all, but they are very, very protectionist.
“You know, our farmers and others can’t even deal with – you know, you can’t sell in. It’s very unfair. And that’s what I’ve been talking about for a long time.
“It’s so stacked against the United States. Now, the EU was conceived to the point that they wanted to do something to compete with the United States.
“Well, you know, you could say that’s a friendly act or an unfriendly act. But it’s very protectionist. Among the most, we have farm products that you just can’t get into the EU. And we don’t do that to them.”
The US leader said the deal could cover “everything” including agriculture, but began to backtrack when asked about financial services.
The UK Government has said Brexit offers an “unprecedented opportunity” to reshape Britain’s trading ambitions, although what that may mean for aspects such as food and agriculture has already proved controversial.
Mr Trump spoke to the newspaper on July 25, when he tweeted: “Working on major Trade Deal with the United Kingdom. Could be very big & exciting. JOBS! The E.U. is very protectionist with the U.S. STOP!”
His comments came as International Trade Secretary Liam Fox was in Washington for talks with US trade representative Robert Lighthizer.
The meeting came after critics raised fears that British markets could be opened up to US agricultural products currently blocked by EU food standards rules, including controversial chlorine-washed chicken.
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