Exclusive: Luxury apartment next to UN headquarters to be used by senior diplomat charged with seeking post-Brexit trade deals

The government has bought a $15.9m (£12m) seven bedroom luxury New York apartment for a senior British civil servant charged with signing fresh trade deals in a post-Brexit world, the Guardian can reveal.

The foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt oversaw the purchase of a 5,893 sq ft (574 sq metre) apartment as the official residence for Antony Phillipson, the UK trade commissioner for North America and consul general in New York. The apartment occupies the whole of the 38th floor of 50 United Nations Plaza, a 42-storey luxury tower near the UN headquarters in Manhattan.

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