UK Trade with EU: Agriculture

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 21st September 2020.

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Photo of Anthony Mangnall Anthony Mangnall Conservative, Totnes

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to help prepare the farming sector for the possibility of the transition period ending with the UK trading with the EU on World Trade Organisation terms.

Photo of Victoria Prentis Victoria Prentis The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The UK Government intends to achieve an FTA with the EU by December 2020. We therefore do not expect the UKGT to apply to EU imports. The Political Declaration sets an aim for “a zero tariff and zero quota FTA”. We would like to achieve that. Reducing the cost pressures and processes associated with trade is in the interests of people and businesses across the UK.

On 31 December 2020, the transition period will end and there will be a guaranteed series of changes and opportunities for which business and the Government need to prepare. Many of these changes will be required regardless of the agreement we reach with the European Union on our future trade relationship because the UK will be leaving the single market and customs union and regaining its political and economic independence.

Through the UK Agriculture Market Monitoring Group (UKAMMG), Defra and the Devolved Administrations continue to monitor the market situation across various agricultural commodities. The group will enable us to remain agile and to identify, and respond as required, to any unforeseen impacts at the end of the transition period.

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