Trade Bill - Committee (1st Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:45 pm on 21st January 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Lord Purvis of Tweed Lord Purvis of Tweed Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (International Trade) 4:45 pm, 21st January 2019

I am grateful for the Minister’s explanations. The WTO at the end of November—I think this relates to what the Minister is saying—stated:

The UK reiterated that it intends to update its proposed GPA schedule of commitments within three months of their coming into effect”.

So in effect that is a continuity commitment—it has given a future commitment for activity. We are trying to find out when this will come into effect—assuming there is a withdrawal agreement, this will be after the implementation period—and by what mechanism the Government will consult on the changes that they are likely to bring in in the future. As the noble Lord, Lord Lansley, said, some of the most important aspects will be the extent of what is covered and what can be procured, rather than necessarily the names of the bodies. That is of critical importance to agencies in Wales and Scotland when it comes to what can be opened up as market for some of them.