The government is said to be in talks to create a global trade agreement in services in an effort to boost the UK economy after Brexit.
Senior ministers and City lobby groups have held discussions over a plan that would allow countries including Britain to export services such as banking, insurance and legal advice to fast-growing economies, the Mail on Sunday reported.
A deal could make it easier for City finance firms to trade with Africa, Asia and the Middle East and add billions to the UK economy.
Government advisers told the newspaper the move was made possible by Brexit, adding that UK representatives would launch negotiations later this year at the World Trade Organization.
The services industries, including retail and finance as well as leisure and culture, accounts for roughly 80 per cent of the UK’s total economic output.
In July to September last year it also accounted for 82 per cent of all employment in the country.
It comes as time runs out for the UK to seal a deal with the EU on financial services by the end of the month.
The two sides are currently holding memorandum of understanding talks on financial services to ensure there is regulatory cooperation on future decisions.
But the EU has so far refused to grant equivalence to the UK, meaning the City has lost its EU-wide access after Brexit.
This has led to warnings from senior figures, including Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey, that the EU was looking to siphon money away from the Square Mile.
But a global deal on services would help to open up rapidly-growing new markets including India and African nations.
Former trade secretary Liam Fox told the Mail: “As International Trade Secretary and the UK’s nominee for WTO Director-General, I championed the cause of the liberalisation of global services as the big prize from Brexit.
“We need to lift our horizons and lead an international effort to remove tariffs and legal barriers and agree global standards.”