Trade Agreements: Developing Countries

Department for International Trade written question – answered on 22nd February 2019.

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Photo of Barry Gardiner Barry Gardiner Shadow Minister (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Energy and Climate Change), Shadow Secretary of State for International Trade

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that those developing countries which access UK markets under the terms of a trade agreement with the EU do not face a disruption to trade in the event that he is unable to conclude a trade agreement with them which replicates the terms of that EU agreement by 29 March 2019.

Photo of George Hollingbery George Hollingbery Minister of State (International Trade)

A deal with the EU would provide a clear mechanism to achieve continuity of our existing free trade agreements with developing countries from exit day and throughout an implementation period.

We are working with partners to conclude and implement agreements from 29 March 2019 or as soon as possible thereafter in the event of a “no deal” exit.

The Taxation (Cross-Border Trade) Act enables the UK to put in place a UK trade preferences scheme for developing countries. If the UK trade agreements are not agreed in time but the UK’s unilateral preferences scheme has been put in place, some developing countries would be eligible for preferential access under different tiers of that scheme.

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