EU Protocol on animal sentience

Part of European Union (Withdrawal) Bill – in the House of Commons at 7:00 pm on 15th November 2017.

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Photo of Caroline Lucas Caroline Lucas Co-Leader of the Green Party 7:00 pm, 15th November 2017

The hon. Gentleman makes an incredibly important point. He has anticipated what I was going to say, but he is exactly right. When it comes to such trade agreements, it will be even more important that our standards are absolutely enshrined in law, so that they cannot be bargained or negotiated away in the interests of getting a better deal.

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has said that he believes this gap should be closed. I very much welcome his support, because this is an important ethical and practical issue. It is of great significance to the UK’s ability to trade freely with the EU27 in the future. As I have said, the UK was the original proposer of the protocol, so we surely have a responsibility to ensure that its provisions are not lost from UK law by our withdrawal from the EU.