Results 1–20 of 1458 for speaker:Nick Thomas-Symonds

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: It is a privilege to open this Second Reading debate on behalf of the Opposition—in what is evidently the biggest political event of the day. I welcome the fact that we are finally here for a longer debate on trade, albeit after the ratification of the two deals we are discussing, and let me say at the outset that the Labour party is in favour of securing trade deals with countries around...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I completely support what the Chair of the Select Committee says. It is a cross-party Committee, so this is not a partisan point. Whatever has been negotiated by Ministers, they should be willing to open themselves up to scrutiny from this House. As I said, this is also a breach of the Government’s own promise. Lord Grimstone wrote in May 2020: “The Government does not envisage a new FTA...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I thank the hon. Member for his congratulations on my biography of Harold Wilson; that is greatly appreciated. On scrutiny, if only the Prime Minister had held the trade brief in the past and been able to do something about it then. Is not the truth perhaps that the Government are running away from scrutiny because they are failing to support exporters properly? The Opposition have been...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My right hon. Friend is right to raise what we should do domestically. He also illustrates another point. There is a history of trade negotiations, including on different standards of animal welfare, that Ministers could have taken heed of, sought to learn lessons from and put into these negotiations. The now Prime Minister said that the Government had no intention of striking any deals that...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I am grateful for that intervention. Yes, it seems that the Prime Minister ploughed on regardless, despite the clear advice that she was given. The concerns that we are discussing must be taken seriously. We need to hear so much more from the Government about how they will support our farmers—that includes smallholding farmers, as were mentioned in an intervention by the hon. Member for...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: On 1 December 2021, in this House, the right hon. Gentleman said that the Australian deal would reaffirm “both parties’ commitments to upholding our obligations under the Paris agreement, including limiting global warming to 1.5°.”—[Official Report, 1 December 2021; Vol. 704, c. 903.] Frankly, I would have cheered as the hon. Lady did if, a few weeks later, the deal had actually...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My hon. Friend is absolutely clear that our NHS should never be on the table in any trade negotiation, but that is one of a number of significant issues that could have been properly raised and ventilated had there been a proper process of scrutiny.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. If the Government do not give that commitment, we will bring forward an amendment in Committee to seek that commitment.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: It is not the threat of the American Government to our NHS that worries me; it is the threat of the Tory Government to the NHS. My right hon. Friend is absolutely right to make that distinction.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I will give way once more and then I will have to make some progress.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My hon. Friend is absolutely right to raise the position of small businesses. Support for small businesses, particularly exporters, is something on which the Government really have to do far better.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I will take one more intervention and then I will have to make some progress.

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I sincerely hope it does; absolutely. I am glad I took the intervention, because of the hon. Lady’s experience of exporting. I am sure she agrees with me that businesses have different amounts of resources to spend on supporting their exports and getting information about markets around the world, and that the Government should stand by all those exporters and make that process as easy as...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: Indeed. I will not hold the Government to impossible standards and of course there are aspects of the deals that I welcome. In particular, the provisions to advance women’s economic empowerment across the New Zealand agreement are to be welcomed. Chapter 25 enables collaborative work between the UK and New Zealand to support women business owners, entrepreneurs and workers to access...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My hon. Friend makes two very good points: first, we should ensure that our British firms have the support that they need to compete in the procurement process; and secondly, this should not be some sort of cloak beneath which there is a race to the bottom on workers’ rights. Both those things are important. The concerns that have been raised about these two deals and the process of...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: I am holding the Conservative Members to the standard that they promised in their manifesto. It is not the standard that I have set, but the standard that they set when they went to the electorate in 2019. Is not the problem that, for too long, Britain has been led by a directionless and, frankly, distracted Conservative party? Conservative Members spent months propping up a discredited Prime...

Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill (6 Sep 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: My hon. Friend makes another very good point about the inadequacies of the scrutiny process. Access to British markets is a huge prize for many other global economies. The Government have to stop selling us short and put in place a proper, core trade strategy that will allow our world-leading businesses to thrive and, for once, truly deliver for communities across the country.

Written Answers — Department for International Trade: Department for International Trade: Staff (22 Jul 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what her Department’s allocated budget and (b) staff headcount is for the trade and investment hubs in (i) Scotland, (ii) Wales, (iii) Northern Ireland and (iv) Darlington.

International Trade: Trade with the EU (21 Jul 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: Thank you, Mr Speaker. I join you in wishing Penny and Isabel well for the future. I also welcome the Minister to the Dispatch Box. I ask this question in place of my hon. Friend the Member for Harrow West (Gareth Thomas), who has covid. I am sure that the whole House will wish him a swift recovery. The tonnage of UK trade in food, feed and drink with both the EU and non-EU countries has...

International Trade: Topical Questions (21 Jul 2022)

Nick Thomas-Symonds: We Opposition Members have long argued that the Government are not doing enough to support exporters. It is now clear that the former Minister, the hon. Member for Finchley and Golders Green (Mike Freer), absolutely agrees. He argued that the trade access programme is underfunded and said of it, “We support too few shows, we don’t send enough business, our pavilions are often decent but...


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