PM announces measures to create "free and inclusive" trade in Commonwealth

Josh Mines
Theresa May Leaves For Prime Minister's Questions
The Prime Minister has made the announcement ahead of the Commonwealth summit, which starts on Monday. (Source: Getty)

Theresa May will this week announce a programmes aimed at boosting trade, economic growth and opportunities for young people in the Commonwealth.

Speaking ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting, which starts on Monday, the Prime Minister will announce a number of initiatives aimed at creating "free and inclusive trade" for young people in the organisation.

The new programmes will look to boost women's participation in business and up-skill young people, who make up a third of the Commonwealth's 2.4bn citizens.

Read more: Fox extols virtues of free trade at inaugural Commonwealth trade meet

One scheme called SheTrades will put £7m into increasing the presence of women-owned businesses to be successful in countries where being female is a barrier.

It's estimated that if women played the same role as men in labour markets, as much as $23tn could be added to global GDP by 2025.

"Our Commonwealth family already accounts for one-fifth of global trade, and we must continue to work together to build further upon this solid foundation by building on our existing trade links and establishing new ones," the Prime Minister stated. She added:

I firmly believe that regardless of which corner of the Commonwealth you are from, we all will benefit from the jobs created by doing so. Every one of those new jobs will mean another family seeing their hard work rewarded, and the spread of greater opportunity.

May also said that the initiatives announced today would equip the Commonwealth to respond to its youth better, rise to the challenges they face and answer their ambitions for a better life.

"In taking decisive action today, we have begun a positive change which will echo through the generations," she continued.

"I am also proud that important action taken at this summit will mean that more women will be able to overcome barriers which keep them from participating in trade."

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