This post is by Anna Sands, trade policy specialist at WWF-UK.
In the past few weeks, a “ferocious” battle has taken place in the cabinet around whether a ‘zero tariff zero quota’ trade deal should be agreed with Australia. With trade secretary Liz Truss on one side, and environment secretary George Eustice on the other, the internal conflict has played out loudly across national and international media.
This post is by Tom Wills, project manager – corporate accountability and trade at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre.
Last month, the European Union took a major step towards passing a new law to stop businesses from abusing human rights and destroying the environment around the world. The EU’s proposed ‘corporate due diligence’ law would help to tackle the widespread abuse of workers and the environment in the supply chains of European companies. This progress in Europe accentuates the failure of the UK government to take similar action.
This post is by Megan Waters, international trade advisor to WWF-UK and former US trade negotiator.
Last summer, the public in the UK – showing far more passion on the subject than many in Whitehall would have expected – spoke nearly with one voice on the subject of food. They made clear that they do not want food standards undermined as part of trade negotiations with the United States, or with anyone else for that matter.
This post is by Aradhna Tandon, policy assistant in the Greener UK unit at Green Alliance
International Trade Secretary Liz Truss announced recently that the UK had submitted its request to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), a trade agreement between 11 countries: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. The US played a central role in the initial negotiations but withdrew when it failed to gain domestic support to join the trading bloc.
This post is by Emma Rose, director at Unchecked UK.
The UK’s departure from the EU has triggered a number of deregulatory pronouncements from Number 10. Boris Johnson’s recent recent call to business leaders to help identify regulatory flotsam for the scrapheap (a suggestion not greeted with much approval by the business community) was followed by last week’s announcement of a new Better Regulation Committee, tasked with cutting EU red tape for businesses.
We finally have a Trade and Co-operation Agreement (TCA) between the UK and EU. This is good news. No deal was always the worst possible option.
The agreement is good on climate, pays lip service to the concept of sustainable development and affirms the parties’ determination “to maintain and improve” environmental and other standards (p182). But Greener UK’s preliminary analysis concludes that it gives little certainty that standards will not be lowered in the future.
This post is by Nandi Mkhize, programme officer and researcher in international trade and Brexit at ClientEarth and Anna Sands, trade policy specialist at WWF.
The UK is developing its new trade policy, amid fierce debate within the country and with trading partners about how it will enshrine environmental standards into law.
This post is by Nigel Haigh, former director of the Institute for European Environmental Policy and chair of Green Alliance from 1989 to 1998.
There are two reasons why the government published a UK internal market bill and white paper dealing with products and some services. One is obvious, the other less so.
It has been a trade-heavy summer, with the government busy negotiating trade deals, the Department for International Trade reviewing the way it engages with stakeholders and rumours that former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott could get a top UK trade role.
This post is by David Lawrence, senior political adviser at the Trade Justice Movement.
The UK has not had the power to strike its own trade agreements for nearly 50 years, due to EU membership. However, many people – and indeed many MPs – will be surprised to learn that, even after Brexit, parliament will have virtually no say over our trade agreements. Read more