Boris Johnson wants to “open up American markets” when it comes to socks | Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
Boris Johnson’s Brexit sock yarn unravels
Boris Johnson said British-made socks attract a 19 percent tariff in the US.
Updated 9/23/19, 6:11 PM CET
NEW YORK — Boris Johnson put his foot in it with U.K. sock manufacturers.
The U.K. prime minister on Sunday night vowed to take Donald Trump to task over what he described as trade restrictions on the footwear as part of a post-Brexit trade deal.
Speaking to journalists as he flew to the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Johnson said he will tell the U.S. president, when the pair meet on Tuesday, that he wants to “open up American markets.”
“If you try to sell British socks in North America, they currently attract a 19 percent tariff and the Americans insist, before they allow British socks to be sold on the U.S. market, that they must try to set fire to them twice,” the prime minister enthused. “And I will make this point to President Trump.”
But sock manufacturers have questioned whether the PM has his sock facts right. Leading British sock firm Corgi Socks told POLITICO that U.S. regulations did not present a problem for their business.
Boris Johnson vowed to take Donald Trump to task over what he described as trade restrictions on socks as part of a post-Brexit trade deal.
“We are at the upper end of the sock market and have a good U.S.