Britain could join a Pacific trade group after leaving the European Union, according to reports.
The Financial Times claimed that the Government held informal talks on becoming a member of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to stimulate exports following Brexit.
Britain would be the first member of the trade agreement to not border the Pacific Ocean or the South China Sea.
Liam Fox's Department for International Trade is said to be developing the proposals to join the group which lost its largest member, the US, when Donald Trump withdrew from the agreement last year.
The 11 remaining member states include Australia, Mexico, Singapore and Canada.
Trade minister Greg Hands told the Financial Times there was no geographical restriction on Britain joining trade groups. "Nothing is excluded in all of this," he said.
"With these kind of plurilateral relationships, there doesn't have to be any geographical restriction."
A spokeswoman for the department said: "We have set up 14 trade 'working groups' across 21 countries to explore the best ways of progressing our trade and investment relationships across the world.
"It is early days, but as our trade policy minister has pointed out, we are not excluding future talks on plurilateral relationships."