Nick Clegg: UK 'took its eye off the Latin American ball'

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg heads a business delegation to Colombia and Mexico today in a bid to forge stronger trade links with the two countries after saying the UK "took its eye off the Latin American ball".

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg. Credit: David Parry/PA Wire

Mr Clegg, who will be joined by Conservative Investment Minister Lord Livingston, Mexico Trade Envoy Lib Dem peer Baroness Bonham-Carter and over 40 UK business leaders, said Britain's presence in Colombia and Mexico had been "too small, too reticent and too modest for far too long".

Speaking ahead of his visit, he said: "The UK took its eye off the Latin American ball, and as a result we've fallen behind many of our other European competitors."

Mr Clegg will meet with Mexico's reforming President, Pena Nieto, for the second time to reiterate the UK's commitment to strengthening its bilateral trade relations, building on his previous visit in March 2011 and President Pena Nieto's visit to the UK in June 2013.