Promised trade deal was incentive for Britons to vote for Brexit; statement comes as U.K. supermarket shelves sit empty over Brexit complications

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson conceded Wednesday that a post-Brexit trade deal with the U.S. was not imminent as he revealed that the decades-long U.S. ban on the import of British lamb would be lifted, the Associated Press reports.

A day after President Joe Biden downplayed the prospect of a trade deal by not pushing back on a suggestion that Britain was at the back of the line, Johnson said British farmers, notably those in Wales, would once again be able to export lamb to the U.S.

“I can tell you today that what we’re going to get from the United States now is a lifting of the decades old ban, totally unjustified, discriminating on British farmers and British lamb,” he told reporters outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington. “It’s about time too. And what we’re wanting to do is make solid incremental steps in trade.”

When campaigning for Britain’s departure from the European Union in 2016, Johnson and other Brexit supporters said one of the great prizes of leaving the bloc would be an overarching trade deal with the U.S. that would see tariffs and quotas eliminated on a wide array of goods.

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