The government has published the final report of the Trade and Agriculture Commission (TAC), which it convened in summer 2020 to advise it on the government’s approach to future Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) as it relates to the agri-food sector. In this paper, we highlight the most important recommendations and explain the economic and policy context behind them.
CEF agrees with the findings of the Trade and Agriculture Commission report and believes that the recommendations should be implemented. Indeed, we believe that the conclusions extend more widely across all of the UK’s trade policy. The key points being:
There needs to be a clear strategy for future UK/ World Trade.
There should be a minister whose main responsibility is driving trade for the UK, looking after the interests
of UK business and UK consumers.
The UK should be at the forefront of moves to automate and reduce border frictions, particularly
modernising regulations to support the growth of small business and direct-to-consumer sales across borders. We should work with our friends in other free market economies to modernise and reform the World Trade Organisation.
Our future trade strategy needs to promote the UK’s commitments to health, the environment (including climate change), bio-security and UK food prices.
New trade deals should look to minimise administration and checks (including SPS/vetinary) and work strongly for our services industries, including financial services.