Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (Accession)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:52 pm on 17th June 2020.

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Photo of Elizabeth Truss Elizabeth Truss The Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, Minister for Women and Equalities 1:52 pm, 17th June 2020

What we are announcing today is our intention to accede, and we are talking to all 11 partners of CPTPP to have those preparatory discussions. Our formal application to CPTPP will require 11 different market access agreements to be sought with all the separate nations with which we are negotiating. We have absolutely no intention of lowering our food safety, environmental or labour standards, or any other standards. We are a high quality, high standards nation, and we want to work with the CPTPP countries on that basis. We believe in free trade and the rules-based system, and that is very much what CPTPP stands for.

The hon. Gentleman asked about investor-state dispute settlement systems. We have signed up to a number of those already, in a series of investor agreements that the UK has already made. Indeed, there are investor provisions in the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, which we are seeking to roll over with Canada. We will always ensure that the UK Government have the right to regulate, that we have control of our public services, and that the NHS is not on the table. If we do not get those things in any of the agreements we try to negotiate, we will simply walk away.