New US ambassador to the UK insists America will stand by Britain despite Brexit and tells crowd: 'When you get to know Donald Trump, you'll like him'13 September 2017 | 01:21 | FOCUS News Agency
Woody Johnson on Tuesday used his first speech as ambassador to emphasise the long-standing ties between Britain and the US – ties, he said, which would not be harmed by Brexit.
“Britain’s decision to leave the European Union takes your country into new territory — but you are not heading there on your own,” he said.
“The United States is committed to standing with the UK through Brexit.
“Our position on Brexit is clear. We want a strong and prosperous UK to remain a leader in Europe, and we want both the UK and the EU to remain strong leaders globally.”
Speaking in Middle Temple Hall at the annual lecture of The Pilgrims of Great Britain, an Anglo-American friendship society, the 70-year-old billionaire owner of the New York Jets American football team said the UK would always have a “strong and reliable trade partner” in the US, despite Brexit.
“It is in everyone’s interest that Brexit be transparent, smooth, and orderly,” he said.
“But whatever the outcome of the negotiations between the UK and the EU, Britain should know you will have a strong and reliable trade and investment partner in America.”
Mr Johnson, heir to the Johnson and Johnson pharmaceutical empire, told how his grandfather chose the UK to establish the company’s first overseas subsidiary, over 100 years ago. The lure remains “just as true today,” he said.
“Our countries are among each other’s largest inward investors. Americans and Brits hold roughly one trillion dollars of investment and employ approximately one million people in each other’s countries — jobs that have increased prosperity and opportunity in all four countries of the United Kingdom and in every American state,” he said.
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