Trade and Customs Deal

- Thursday, 27th April 2017

 

Cargo Ship

Peter Lilley: Although my hon. Friend Sir Edward Leigh and I are of one mind, we have two questions—and only one knighthood.

 

The Government are right to seek a continuing free trade agreement with the European Union: it will be in the interests of the European Union as well as in ours, and it will be the first, best outcome. However, Ministers cannot admit what I think is quite likely, which is that politics may trump economics and that there may be no deal. Will they therefore confirm that in those circumstances we will go to a good, second-best outcome, which is trading on most favoured nation terms, as do the European Union’s most successful partners—the USA, China, Japan and Russia? It would mean an average tariff of 4%, which is relatively small beer compared with a 15% improvement in competitiveness because of the exchange rate, while saving £10 billion a year, which is equivalent to a 7% tariff on our exports.

 

 

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Trade and Customs Deal

 

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