Former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott says there is an "eagerness" to secure a UK-Australia free trade deal before Christmas among representatives from both governments.
Abbott, who now acts as an adviser to the UK Board of Trade, said they hoped to get a deal with no tariffs and no quotas "as quickly as we can".
"I know that on both sides there is an eagerness to try to get the Australia deal done before Christmas," he said while giving evidence to the UK Commons International Trade Committee.
"I hope that in the next negotiating session both sides are prepared to put all their cards on the table so that the best possible deal can be hammered out," he added.
"Ideally a deal between Britain and Australia would involve no tariffs, no quotas, as full as possible mutual recognition of standards and qualifications, and as free as possible movement of people for well-paid work, not welfare."
Abbott said the UK was right to prioritise post-Brexit deals with Commonwealth countries like Australia, Canada and New Zealand, as well as the US, given the difficulties with the EU.
"Given the goodwill that continues to exist between Britain and the countries of the Commonwealth I think it is important to make the most of that, to utilise it as far as is possible, particularly if there is not always that much goodwill at the moment between Britain and the EU."
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced criticism over Abbott's appointment earlier this year amid controversy surrounding past remarks Abbott has made.
Abbott told the committee there had been no formal process of appointment.
"I received a phone call one evening from the Secretary of State (for International Trade) Liz Truss," he said.
"She said, 'We are going to reconstitute the Board of Trade, including a number of the advisers. Would you be prepared to be one of the advisers?'
"I said, 'I'd love to be considered, I am happy to help as far as I am able'."
He said his role was to act as an advocate for free trade and in some cases helping to facilitate agreements.
"I have certain networks and contacts in all sorts of places. If I can deploy them in ways to help Britain in ways which are not inconsistent with Australia's best national interests, I would obviously be only too happy to do so," he said.
Mr Abbott said he believed the environment was "incredibly important" but trade deals should not be held up by concerns over environmental standards.
"If you try to do everything in a trade deal you'll end up doing nothing. There are other forums to pursue climate initiatives," he said.
Australian Associated Press