Food, Farming and Countryside Commission

Trade fit for the future?

By Jane Campbell

19th January 2021

Important amendments to the Trade Bill are making their way back and forth between the Commons and the Lords this week.

To support these deliberations, FFCC is writing to MPs and Peers to share Trade fit for the future? - the findings of our #TradeUnwrapped inquiry, which point to the importance of considering broad perspectives as the UK makes decisions about future trading relationships.

We have found that clear policy goals are essential to establish a modern approach to trade and we make recommendations for appropriate governance structures and principles to support UK trade decisions.

Evidence gathered throughout Trade Unwrapped points to two key recommendations:

  • Strengthen trade governance for the new arrangements
  • Establish guiding principles for modern trade policy

Trade Unwrapped is an inquiry formed by a group of organisations to initiate thoughtful and inclusive discussion to explore the impact trade has on our lives and whether our trade policies are fit for future generations.

Based on this evidence, we are asking MPs and Peers to:

Support the clause on Parliamentary approval of trade agreements – Parliament must have a strong role to ensure the Government’s objectives are in the public interest. Effective scrutiny would improve the quality of decision-making.

Support the clause on the Trade and Agriculture Commission – the Lords addition of persons with expertise in public health and health inequalities be part of the TAC recognises the need for joined up thinking across different sectors.

Support the clause on standards affected by international trade agreements – we support establishing a code of practice setting out how standards would be maintained across food, animal welfare, the environment, human rights, welfare and labour law. We will continue to support the deliberations underpinning the UK's future trade deals with evidence from #TradeUnwrapped - and we welcome your thoughts, comment and participation.

We will continue to support the debate underpinning the UK's future trade deals with evidence from #TradeUnwrapped - and we welcome your thoughts, comment and participation.