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Sheep Meat: Import Duties

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 22nd July 2019.

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Photo of Jo Stevens Jo Stevens Labour, Cardiff Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Department for International Trade's draft tariff schedule, Temporary rates of custom duty, published on 13 March 2019, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect on livestock farmers in the event that the EU matches the tariff on sheep meat proposed in that draft tariff schedule in the event that the UK leaves the EU without an agreement.

Photo of David Rutley David Rutley Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), Government Whip

Consistent with World Trade Organisation rules, the EU must apply tariffs equally to imports from all countries where there is not a trade agreement or any other preferential arrangement in place. In the event of no deal, this includes the UK.

We anticipate that the application of EU tariffs on UK exports would have a substantial negative impact across the UK farming sector, particularly for sheepmeat where those tariffs are high and around 30% of production is exported, approximately 95% of which goes to the EU. This is just one reason why delivering a negotiated settlement remains the Government’s top priority.

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