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Amendment 31

Part of Trade Bill - Report (2nd Day) – in the House of Lords at 6:30 pm on 13th March 2019.

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Photo of Lord Lansley Lord Lansley Conservative 6:30 pm, 13th March 2019

My Lords, I will make three very quick points. First, we need to be clear that Amendment 31 simply tries to attach the words “special consideration” rather than “take account”. It is not that all the factors are not there; they are, and they will be considered. The point is that special consideration should be given to this. It is not necessary to do that, because the nature of the structure in Schedule 4 would suggest that that precisely would be the case. I cannot therefore support the amendment. Temperamentally, I want to support Amendment 32, but I fear that in practice there will be many such regulations and it would not be the best use of time for this House and the other place repeatedly to engage in approving regulations of this kind.

I am interested in whether the Minster has anything to add on the potential announcements today on tariffs, which we foreshadowed last week. It is said that all the existing remedies presently imposed by the European Union would be continued, even under a no-deal scenario, by the United Kingdom. I want to inquire—the Minister might choose to reply by letter—to what extent it will be sustainable for us to do that when the remedies will have been assessed in relation to the European Union as a whole, rather than to the United Kingdom itself. For example, an increase in imports leading to injury to an industry might well be applied by the European Union in relation to an industry in Italy or Spain, but it would not be appropriate for such a remedy to be applied in the United Kingdom. That would very rapidly be open to challenge if we do not get the Trade Remedies Investigation Directorate, which is up and running in the Department for International Trade, on the case, so that we can, if we have to—I hope we do not—apply remedies on the basis of an investigation with UK, rather than EU, data.