No-Deal Brexit: Schedule of Tariffs

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:33 pm on 7th October 2019.

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Photo of Stewart Hosie Stewart Hosie Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Trade) 4:33 pm, 7th October 2019

When the temporary tariff regime was announced this March, the UK Government argued that, if they maintained the current external tariff regime, there would be new tariffs on EU imports. They said that, if zero tariffs were maintained with the EU, even though that would minimise trade disruption, that would be required to be extended to the rest of the world due to WTO rules. The Government also said that they would keep 43 of the existing trade remedy measures that were in place, but much has changed since then. There has been another round of US tariffs and there is the potential for another round of EU tariffs in response to the US action, so let me ask the Minister this.

Given new tariffs from the US and the EU, has the schedule in the temporary tariff regime changed and, if so, by how much? Has the list of 43 trade remedies to be kept and 66 to be abandoned changed and, if so, by how many? Most importantly, with barely three weeks to go to a potential no-deal Brexit—although the Benn Act should protect us from that—I say to the Minister that it is not irresponsible to publish the new schedule. It is absolutely necessary to publish it, not least to allow businesses—importing and exporting businesses alike—at least a little certainty and to ensure that they can continue to operate within the law. The Minister is having a great time teasing us about when the schedule will be published, so may I ask him to publish it today so that businesses understand precisely what they are dealing with?