Dodds slams New Zealand trade deal

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have accused the Conservatives of dealing a hammer blow to Welsh sheep farmers after news broke that the UK and New Zealand have signed a trade deal. They are worried that lower standard and cheap meat from New Zealand could flood the UK markets and leave the British and Welsh farming industry unable to compete.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds said:

I am extremely disappointed that the Conservative Government has decided to toss Welsh sheep farmers aside in this manner, completely ignoring their concerns and breaking previous commitments to the farming community made by the Party.

The NFU has also criticised the deal saying it had heard next to nothing from the government on how British agriculture is expected to compete with either Australia or New Zealand which both face less regulation than their British counterparts.

Jane Dodds said:

Small and local family-owned farms will be the worst hit by this deal, unable to compete with large farming corporations present in both New Zealand and Australia. Animal welfare standards in New Zealand are also significantly below that expected in the UK, meaning both Welsh producers and consumers will be bearing the brunt of this decision.

The rush to sign this trade deal could have lasting impacts on the Welsh economy and rural life in Wales, especially in Mid and North Wales where we have such vibrant sheep farming communities. The deal also comes at an already difficult time for our farmers, with significant labour shortages being seen across the country and rising production costs, not least due to energy price rises.

Furthermore, the benefits of this deal, alongside that of the Australian deal do not even begin to cover the lost trade revenue caused by Brexit, with the lost trade between the UK and Ireland in the last six months eclipsing that of the supposed benefits of the Australia trade deal over the next 15 years.

NFU President Minette Batters said this deal “means we will be opening our doors to significant extra volumes of imported food – whether or not produced to our own high standards – while securing almost nothing in return for UK farmers”.

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41 Comments

  • John Marriott 22nd Oct '21 - 5:12pm

    Any new deal negotiated now will have to go a long way to equal the ‘deal’ we used to have with the EU. The trouble is that, when it comes to patriotism in what we buy, that just goes out of the window in favour of cost. I’m not talking about the cost of shipping stuff half way round the world. I’m talking about what the customer has to pay. In order to get that down, somebody has to get screwed.

  • Brad Barrows 22nd Oct '21 - 5:34pm

    So I thought the Liberal Democrats were unequivocal supporters of Free Trade….
    …not much of that evident in this article.

  • Barry Lofty 22nd Oct '21 - 5:38pm

    This government is getting desperate to show that it’s oven ready deals are coming to table and in their desperation they are willing to shaft the farming community who have overwhelmingly backed the Tories for generations! As John Marriott says we will not get a better deal than the one we already had with the EU, in more says than one !

  • Barry Lofty 22nd Oct '21 - 5:45pm

    Sorry “in more ways than one”

  • Brexit has happened. It was voted for in a referendum, at which point staying in the EU became no longer an option. Therefore it is completely irrelevant whether this trade deal is better or worse than staying in the EU. What is relevant is whether this trade deal makes things better or worse compared not having the trade deal. Deciding that requires some understanding of what the terms of the deal are, and I don’t see any info about that.

    What I’d like to know is, what is the particular objection to this deal? Is there something specific in the terms of the deal that is bad? Is the objection mainly because the Tories negotiated the deal and we’re assuming everything the Tories do is bad? Or is there an objection in principle to making a trade deal with New Zealand?

  • Barry Lofty 22nd Oct '21 - 6:27pm

    There is nothing wrong with making a trade deal with NZ we probably had one already, just saying that we lost a massive market that sits on our doorstep! I don’t think anyone can deny that.

  • John Marriott 22nd Oct '21 - 7:05pm

    Don’t get me wrong. In the 1950s I grew up on Canterbury lamb and large tins of Australian quince jam! Most of that stuff largely disappeared when we joined the Common Market and our erstwhile colonies found new trading partners nearer to home in the Pacific rim.

    Yes, Brad Barrows, of course I believe in trade. Whether it is ‘free’ in many senses is debatable. I have some sympathy for our farmers and would also like to ‘buy local’. My worry is that, in order for me to do both, someone may lose out and that’s likely to be our farmers.

  • nigel hunter 22nd Oct '21 - 9:12pm

    Free trade is fine as long as ‘the little guy’ is not gobbled up by the giants.UK food production has to be protected.WW2 showed us that in times of trouble we cannot feed ourselves.If NZ and Australia in the volatile Pacific could not supply us do we starve? We need our own farmers as an insurance policy to ward against future troubles

  • George Thomas 22nd Oct '21 - 10:40pm

    New Zealand deal is worth between -.01 and +0.1 to the economy and puts farmers across the UK at a disadvantage which is especially worrying in places such as Northern Ireland and Wales where there is such a cultural, historical and economic significance of the profession.

    LD’s had such a strong presence in Welsh politics but maybe the comments section in this thread shows why that’s not the case any more.

  • Cllr Keith Orrell 23rd Oct '21 - 9:35am

    All Trade agreements should have a climate change impact assessment.

  • Nonconformistradical 23rd Oct '21 - 9:41am

    “Brexiteers did promise us that one of the “benefits” of Brexit would be that we could import cheap produce from around the world. ”

    Quite.

    What about food security…?

  • This trade deal IS bad for Welsh farming and our lamb producers here.
    The is why it is in Welsh interests to be in the European Single market & customs union.
    We can do this by entering EFTA, many people who voted ‘Leave’ expected that we will remain in EFTA.
    For Wales, we should put it to the UK that if they (the UK) are not even prepared to join EFTA, that the Government of Wales should leave the UK so we can rejoin EFTA at the earliest opportunity and later the EU.
    I think the UK system has been damaged too much by the extreme right wing of the Tories and it may well be too late for the current system to be able to be reformed.
    A new British Federal Republic may be considered but would that be as redundant as Benelux when the European Union was founded.

  • Peter Martin 23rd Oct '21 - 11:55am

    Keeping food prices artificially high isn’t the only way to support our farmers.

    This, though, has always been the EU way. They have always relied on tariffs to keep out international competition and even elevated the price internally by buying up surplus production for a guaranteed price. The result was that we had the famed ‘butter mountains’ and milk and wine lakes etc. There was nothing else to be done with it other than sell it off to the Russians at some ridiculously low price or use it a biofuel.

    There has to be a better way which will involve more direct support to our farmers. This means we pay farmers to not only farm but act as custodians of the landscape. The requirement is that they still produce something but not necessarily to the maximum extent. The natural ecology of the regions is at least as important as the food production.

  • Peter Marin,

    “There has to be a better way which will involve more direct support to our farmers. This means we pay farmers to not only farm but act as custodians of the landscape. The requirement is that they still produce something but not necessarily to the maximum extent. The natural ecology of the regions is at least as important as the food production.”

    Just such a system already exists – it is called the Common Agricultural Policy. It has long been focused on incentivising farmers to use crop rotation and maintain an ecological focus as well as biodiversity-rich ecosystems on agricultural land.

  • @Peter Martin “Keeping food prices artificially high isn’t the only way to support our farmers.”
    Yes, I remember the system before the UK joined CAP etc. where the Westminster executive begrudgingly handed out pennies and then only really to those it regarded as its supporters; it really worked well, not. From what we’ve seen so far, it does look like we are heading back to the pre-EU system…

    I’m a little surprised that someone supposedly as well read as yourself attribute the butter mountains and milk/wine lakes to such simple reasoning. Remember the UK was an overproducer of milk, as it didn’t care about “the natural ecology of the region”or about the real health of the dairy herd (my cousin was a dairy expert, and before he left to work abroad, we would get it in the ear about the madness of the UK dairy industry).

    There is nothing wrong in using tariffs and standards to keep out international competitionpreditors. Remember the UK government are using similar techniques to get logistic companies to invest in the UK and train UK resident drivers.

  • Peter Martin 23rd Oct ’21 – 11:55am:
    There has to be a better way which will involve more direct support to our farmers. This means we pay farmers to not only farm but act as custodians of the landscape.

    Indeed. That’s exactly what the Agriculture Act 2020 sets out to do…

    ‘We have an Agriculture Act – but let’s not relax now’ [November 2020]:
    https://www.sustainweb.org/blogs/nov20-new-agriculture-act2020/

    What we secured in the final Agriculture Act

    Much farm support will now be based on delivering public goods or benefits – supporting farmers whilst helping deliver on top priorities like nature protection, soil health, climate change mitigation, clean air and water, and animal welfare. Environmental Land Management and other policies across all four nations should be better as a result. But there is more work to do on implementation.

    A mention in the Act for agro-ecology, soil protection and far greater recognition of the role of whole-farm approaches in delivering sustainable food and farming. All valuable steps.

    A brand new fair dealing regulation and transparency for the supply chain – as we know supply chain abuse can hurt farmers’ livelihoods and sustainability here and overseas.

    ‘Landmark Agriculture Act spells new era for British food and farming’ [November 2020]:
    https://www.devonlive.com/news/uk-world-news/landmark-agriculture-act-spells-new-4691095

    A seven-year agricultural transition period is set to begin in 2021, marking a clean break away from Europe’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) towards a new Environmental Land Management (ELM) scheme. […]

    The ELM system will replace the poorly targeted Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) subsidy system, which largely pays farmers for the total amount of land farmed and has skewed payments towards the largest landowners, rather than rewarding farmers for any specific public benefits.

  • Peter Martin 23rd Oct '21 - 3:01pm

    @ Joe,

    I’m sure you must be aware that the EU’s CAP is history as far as the UK is concerned. In any case it relies on high tariffs to stifle competition. The Liberals historically opposed such protectionist measures as the Corn Laws but that was then! Now, it’s not just Corn but pretty much every agricultural product imaginable. There no reason to have such high tariffs and we need to be moving away from them.

    https://ahdb.org.uk/eu-and-uk-import-tariff-rates-for-selected-dairy-products

  • Peter Martin,

    yes, the EU Cap system no longer applies to the UK, but the UK Agriculture Act emulates much of the previous policy.
    As this IEA report https://iea.org.uk/publications/research/reforming-eu-farm-policy-lessons-from-new-zealand notes New Zealand is one of the few countries which has abandoned subsidies and embarked on free trade for agriculture. The NZ experience indicates that it may take several years for UK farmers to be able to adapt to Free trade agreements of this kind with considerable disruption to small farming businesses in the interim.

  • Joe Bourke 23rd Oct ’21 – 12:27pm:
    Just such a system already exists – it is called the Common Agricultural Policy.

    The EU’s Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) was detrimental to both the environment and UK working farmers. It mostly rewarded wealthy land owners…

    ‘Peers and MPs receiving millions in EU farm subsidies’ [January 2019]:
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jan/27/revealed-the-mps-and-peers-receiving-millions-in-eu-farm-subsidies-cap

    An analysis by the Guardian and the environmental group Friends of the Earth identified 48 parliamentarians who claimed £5.7m in farming subsidies under the EU’s common agricultural policy (CAP) in 2017, the latest year for which figures are available. […]

    The EU subsidies have been criticised for many years for rewarding large landowners, who receive the biggest payments. The top 10% of recipients receive almost 50% of total payments, which in the UK amount to £3bn per year.

    Not even George Monbiot likes the CAP…

    ‘The one good thing about Brexit? Leaving the EU’s disgraceful farming system’ [October 2018]:
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/oct/10/brexit-leaving-eu-farming-agriculture

    I’m a remainer, but there’s one result of Brexit I can’t wait to see: leaving the EU’s common agricultural policy. This is the farm subsidy system that spends €50bn (£44bn) a year on achieving none of its objectives. It is among the most powerful drivers of environmental destruction in the northern hemisphere. Because payments are made only for land that’s in “agricultural condition”, the system creates a perverse incentive to clear wildlife habitats, even in places unsuitable for farming, to produce the empty ground that qualifies for public money. These payments have led to the destruction of hundreds of thousands of hectares of magnificent wild places across Europe.

    Joe Bourke 23rd Oct ’21 – 3:21pm:
    …the EU Cap system no longer applies to the UK, but the UK Agriculture Act emulates much of the previous policy.

    It doesn’t. The Agriculture Act 2020 is a radical departure from previous (CAP) policy – that’s why there is a seven-year transition period.

  • They are worried that lower standard and cheap meat from New Zealand could flood the UK markets and leave the British and Welsh farming industry unable to compete.

    New Zealand lamb is widely regarded as high quality. It already accounts for the majority of our imports of sheep meat. Unlike EU and UK farmers, New Zealand farmers are unsubsidised.

    New Zealand already has a UK sheep meat quota of 114,184 tonnes (half the old EU quota). This is the carcass weight that can be imported before tariffs apply. In recent years New Zealand exporters have only filled HALF of it. So the additional quota agreed by the UK is moot; without this trade deal they could already sell us twice as much lamb tariff-free (and much more when we were in the EU).

    ‘NZ lamb imports to UK at historic low’ [December 2020]:
    https://www.farmersjournal.ie/nz-lamb-imports-to-uk-at-historic-low-588037

    The total amount imported to the UK has halved in the last seven years.

    Just 30,706t of New Zealand (NZ) mutton and lamb has been exported to the UK market in the nine months to the end of September 2020, figures from HMRC confirm.

    It is the lowest figure ever recorded by HRMC and while the dataset only goes back to 2013, it is understood that prior to that, equivalent figures were frequently in excess of 60,000t. […]

    NZ exports to the UK have been in steady decline since 2016, partly on the back of a smaller sheep flock, as more farmers moved into dairy. […]

    At peak season, the UK depends on exports to keep supply and demand in balance, and fills the gap out of season with imports, traditionally from NZ.

  • John Marriott 22nd Oct ’21 – 5:12pm:
    Any new deal negotiated now will have to go a long way to equal the ‘deal’ we used to have with the EU.

    You mean the ‘deal’ where we started off with a trade surplus and ended up with a humongous £97 billion deficit. This new deal isn’t likely to turn our trade surplus with New Zealand into a deficit.

    ‘Trade in Goods (T): EU: Balance: BOP: CP: SA’:
    https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/nationalaccounts/balanceofpayments/timeseries/l87q/mret

    Barry Lofty 22nd Oct ’21 – 6:27pm:
    There is nothing wrong with making a trade deal with NZ we probably had one already, just saying that we lost a massive market that sits on our doorstep!

    We didn’t have any trade deal with New Zealand apart from a Mutual Recognition Agreement. We haven’t lost the EU as a market. The Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) gives us full tariff and quota free access to the EU’s markets. From Q2 2016 to Q2 2021 our exports to the EU rose by 20%.

    ‘UK exports to EU soar 20% since Referendum. Who needs EU’s Single Market?’:
    https://facts4eu.org/news/2021_aug_UK_exports_soar

    Yesterday (12 Aug 2021) the Office for National Statistics released its latest trade figures, for the second quarter of this year, to end-June. Facts4EU.Org’s analysis shows that UK exports to the EU have rebounded by 31.5% since the first quarter of the year, and that exports to the EU are 20% higher than they were five years ago, just before the EU Referendum. […]

    2. Long-term – The large increase in UK sales to the EU since just before the EU Referendum

    UK’s goods exports to the EU grew by 20% compared to the same quarter five years ago (Q2 2016)
    UK’s sales to the EU in Q2 2016: £32.1 billion
    UK’s sales to the EU five years later, in Q2 2021: £38.56 billion

  • GWYN Williams 23rd Oct '21 - 9:18pm

    The EU does allow a quota of 114,185 tonnes of tariff free sheepmeat from New Zealand every year. It is only exports over that level which attract an ad valorem tariff of 12.8% and a further tariff of between 900 and 3000 euros per tonne. Due to the drought in New Zealand and the development of a market for New Zealand sheep meat in China in recent years, the quota has not been met. Indeed in 2020 exports of New Zealand sheep meat to the UK fell to less than 40,000 tonnes.
    As to the specific effects on Welsh farming, agriculture is devolved to the Cardiff Senedd. This has meant a different system for subsidies in Wales from England, Scotland or Northern Ireland. As well as further onerous regulations imposed by the Senedd with the reestablishment of the Agricultural Wages Board in Wales and extending Nitrate Vulnerable Zones across the entire country. Wales is in a worse position to compete with farmers in the rest of the UK in a free market let alone very lightly regulated New Zealand agriculture.
    Sadly for the Welsh Liberal Democrats, all the Tories have to say why if Ms Dodds is so concerned about Welsh livestock farmers does she refuse to eat their produce!

  • They are worried that lower standard and cheap meat from New Zealand could flood the UK markets and leave the British and Welsh farming industry unable to compete.

    New Zealand lamb is widely regarded as high quality. It already accounts for the majority of our imports of sheep meat. Unlike EU and UK farmers, New Zealand farmers are unsubsidised.

    New Zealand already has a UK sheep meat quota of 114,184 tonnes (half the old EU quota). This is the carcass weight that can be imported before tariffs apply. In recent years New Zealand exporters have only filled half of that. So the additional quota agreed by the UK is moot; without this trade deal they could already sell us twice as much lamb tariff-free (and much more when we were in the EU).

    ‘NZ lamb imports to UK at historic low’ [December 2020]:
    https://www.farmersjournal.ie/nz-lamb-imports-to-uk-at-historic-low-588037

    The total amount imported to the UK has halved in the last seven years.

    Just 30,706t of New Zealand (NZ) mutton and lamb has been exported to the UK market in the nine months to the end of September 2020, figures from HMRC confirm.

    It is the lowest figure ever recorded by HRMC and while the dataset only goes back to 2013, it is understood that prior to that, equivalent figures were frequently in excess of 60,000t. […]

    NZ exports to the UK have been in steady decline since 2016, partly on the back of a smaller sheep flock, as more farmers moved into dairy. […]

    At peak season, the UK depends on exports to keep supply and demand in balance, and fills the gap out of season with imports, traditionally from NZ.

  • John Marriott 24th Oct '21 - 9:42am

    @Jeff
    I don’t know how old you are (or even, for that matter, WHO you are), but if you were old enough to remember the state of our economy in the late 1960s and early 1970s before North Sea oil kicked in and, indeed, after many years of trying, before we finally gained membership of what we used to call the ‘Common Market’; but pretty dire they were. You are very good at providing us with facts and figures and I gather, from the occasional personal remark, that you are not a big fan of what the Common Market eventually became. Neither am I; but, as I have written before, I know on which side my bread is buttered!

    In the early 1970s membership of the EEC, to give the Common Market its correct name, off the U.K. an economic lifeline. Having taken it and having eventually in many respects, squandered the opportunities that North Sea oil afforded us, in true Little Englander tradition, we, or least some of us, now prefer to blame our failings on foreigners, not a very attractive character trait. That £97 billion deficit with the EU that you have come up with may be a fact; but you fail to explain the reasons why it exists.

  • Jeff! We haven’t lost the EU market! Maybe not completely but there seems to be many areas where it has become needlessly much more difficult to trade with a massive market just across the channel and some of the anti Europe rhetoric emanating from our present government is less than helpful. Yes I was and am pro EU membership even though admitting that everything was not perfect, how many things in life are? But you can’t change things unless you are a member and walking off with ball when you don’t get your own way just shows a very bad trait in the British nature.

  • Strange how since the prospect of much vaunted US ‘deal’ disappeared Truss says it wasn’t that important anyway..
    The Australian deal, yet to be ratified, seems to add nothing to the UK’s advantage but much to the Australian beef sector..This new wonder deal seems much the same..

    That apart, ‘distance matters’ and, instead of a short drive under the channel, UK frade will be subject to the massive increases in freight costs (costs of 40ft containers have quadrupled ) which will be passed on to consumers…

    Johnson/Truss has hailed these deals as ‘victories for Brexit’ ..To rephrase Pyrrhus. “A few more such deals will see us in real trouble”

  • John Marriott 24th Oct ’21 – 9:42am:
    In the early 1970s membership of the EEC, to give the Common Market its correct name, off the U.K. an economic lifeline.

    That was just deceptive propaganda; the facts show otherwise. After joining, our average GDP growth slowed and our trade account deteriorated resulting in the balance of payments crisis of 1976 when an IMF loan had to be sought to stabilise the pound. Our growth rate slowed even further after the formation of the EU ’single market’. There was no economic case for joining as subsequent results have shown. On joining, 60% of our exports went to the then EEC, on leaving the much larger EU, almost 60% of our exports went to the world outside. The reason we joined was entirely political…

    ‘Why Britain really joined the EEC (and why it had nothing to do with helping our economy)’:
    https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/brexit/2015/11/26/why-britain-really-joined-the-eec-and-why-it-had-nothing-to-do-with-helping-our-economy/

    In 1959, when Macmillan took office, the real annual growth rate of British GDP, according to the Office of National Statistics, was almost 6%. It was again almost 6% when de Gaulle vetoed Britain’s first application to join the EEC in 1963. In 1973, when we entered, our annual national growth rate in real terms was a record 7.4%. The present Chancellor would die for such a figure. So the economic basket case argument doesn’t work.

    From the start, many predicted that EEC membership would be detrimental to our economic performance not least by the late Peter Shore MP in his now famous speech…

    ‘Peter Shore – Oxford Union 1975 – Common Market membership – Full Speech’:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wd7NzQgHLn8

    Sadly, we don’t have politicians of this calibre anymore. Regardless of whether one agreed with his politics or not he was a man of principal and passion who believed in Britain and its people.

  • Peter Martin 24th Oct '21 - 1:43pm

    @ John,

    “That £97 billion deficit with the EU that you have come up with may be a fact; but you fail to explain the reasons why it exists.”

    It’s just simple arithmetic, John.

    The EU is led by Germany, closely followed by the Netherlands and Denmark, which as a matter of national pride runs the biggest export surplus it possibly can. The Germans just don’t like buying in stuff from abroad.

    Consequently, if they are running a surplus someone else has to run a deficit.

    The UK’s trade account with the ROW doesn’t have the same problem, we’re actually in small surplus, which would suggest the deficit is more to do with the EU than us.

  • John Marriott 24th Oct '21 - 2:04pm

    @Jeff
    At last, now we know where you stand on the EU at least. Well, fair enough. I happen to disagree with you. However, I get my ‘facts’ from having lived through the period before we joined the EEC and not from reading books or articles from certain sources, possibly written many years later. I’m still not sure whether you did.

    In fact I was living in Canada at the time that Ted Heath signed us in. However, I had returned to this country by the time the 1975 referendum took place, which, despite the warnings of politicians like Peter Shore and Tony Benn, went 2 to 1 in favour of staying in. How do you explain that? Living abroad between 1970 and 1974 (which included a year in West Germany) really was an eye opener for me on just how the U.K. was viewed.

    The sad fact was that our position as a so called world power had been massively eroded. Surely the débâcle of Suez should have taught us that we could no longer go it alone. That growth rate of 7.4% you proudly quoted included the ‘Barber Boom’ which saw the quadrupling of house prices over four years and was the starting point for inflation that reached a staggering 25% by the middle of the decade and called for the intervention of the IMF. I don’t know what your files tell you; but they were NOT happy times for many of us, who lived through them!

    We blew the opportunity to modernise and streamline our industrial base that North Sea oil revenues should have given us. A combination of weak, hubristic management, over influential trades unions and doctrinaire politicians saw to that. In direct competition with our partners in the EU were found wanting. We had our chance and we blew it, despite the ‘deal’ we had post Lisbon, with its various options outs.

    I’ve already cracked the joke several times about the politician, the drunkard and the lamp post when it comes to statistics so I won’t bore LDV readers with it again. I guess you reckon that you have enough evidence to prove that “the reason we joined (the EEC) was entirely political “. I’m not sure that you have.

  • Barry Lofty 24th Oct '21 - 2:37pm

    As usual with the anti EU stance it is always someone else’s fault never the hard done by British, by the way you have to admire the Germans, but they did have a well respected figure at the head of government for a number of years and that gives a country a certain amount of stability.

  • Russell Simpson 24th Oct '21 - 6:47pm

    As a kiwi from Southland (who’s been living in the UK for 35 years) I well remember the UK joining the EEC. It had a huge impact on rural NZ. One impact was a huge increase in male suicide. The Labour NZ govt removed subsidies overnight. Eventually NZ realised they were “on their own” and found new markets. I fear for the Welsh farmers but cannot imagine why any of them would have voted for Brexit.

  • Russell Simpson 24th Oct ’21 – 6:47pm:
    I fear for the Welsh farmers but cannot imagine why any of them would have voted for Brexit.

    New Zealand lamb exports use less than half their existing quota. They would have to double sales before they could unlock the additional quota agreed in this trade deal. That’s not likely to happen. New Zealand now has other markets, such as China, and many sheep farmers have moved to dairy.

    George Thomas 22nd Oct ’21 – 10:40pm:
    New Zealand deal is worth between -.01 and +0.1 to the economy and puts farmers across the UK at a disadvantage…

    The most competition to UK farmers comes from EU farmers who are heavily subsidised, operate in the same seasons, and already have quota and tariff-free access to the UK market. The businesses who may be worried about this trade deal are in the EU. French wine producers, for example, will soon have to compete on a level playing field with tariff-free wines from Australia and New Zealand .

    Both the Australian and New Zealand trade agreements are steps to joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). That offers UK exporters, not least farmers, huge opportunities. With the UK as a member it will be 16% of world GDP and growing fast – within a decade or two it could be double the size of the EU even without any more countries joining.

  • expats 24th Oct ’21 – 12:06pm:
    Strange how since the prospect of much vaunted US ‘deal’ disappeared Truss says it wasn’t that important anyway.

    The Vote Leave site didn’t even mention a US trade deal…

    ‘Why Vote Leave’:
    http://www.voteleavetakecontrol.org/why_vote_leave.html

    We’ll be free to trade with the whole world
    The EU stops us signing our own trade deals with key allies such as Australia and New Zealand, and growing economies like India, China or Brazil. We’ll be free to seize new opportunities which means more jobs.

    The US is already our largest single export market (a genuine single market which uses a single language for advertising, marketing and packaging). It has relatively low tariffs – just 2.5% on cars, for example, compared with the EU’s 10%. A US trade deal would just be icing on the cake. The Biden administration is not expected to negotiate new trade deals until after the US has recovered.

    The Australian deal, yet to be ratified, seems to add nothing to the UK’s advantage but much to the Australian beef sector..This new wonder deal seems much the same.

    The Australian trade deal is still being negotiated. It will be larger and more beneficial for the UK than most of the EU trade deals we rolled over. Both deals are incremental steps to joining the CPTTP.

    …‘distance matters’ and, instead of a short drive under the channel, UK trade will be subject to the massive increases in freight costs…

    A myth, often promulgated during the Referendum campaign, is that long-distance shipping costs a lot more than moving goods within the EU. By far the cheapest way to move a shipping container is by ship. Operating costs are shared across thousands of containers – over 20,000 on some of the largest ships. So the cost per container is typically small. Costs vary greatly depending on the route. Here are some current costs for shipping a single twenty foot (TEU) container from the UK: Dublin £1,424, Barcelona or Lisbon £2,009, and Auckland, Melbourne, or Sydney just £100 more at £2,108.

    ‘International Container Shipping Costs and Rates 2021’:
    https://www.movehub.com/advice/international-container-shipping-costs/

    10 containers of Scotch would get a better rate. For UK exporters, it’s easier to sell to other English speaking countries than the EU with its protectionist customs procedures and 24 different languages.

  • John Marriott 25th Oct '21 - 8:45am

    @Jeff
    Ok, we know where you’re coming from. You’re a Brexiteer and one, who reckons he has the facts and figures to prove his point. However, much of what you present as fact is actually supposition, which might well turn out to be as accurate as what was written on the side of that London Transport bus!

    Perhaps the US trade deal never appeared in the ‘Vote Leave’ Manifesto but it certainly came up many in debate. It was going to be a walk in the park, they said. By the way, I think that the long distance shipping argument has more to do with the environment than saving money, particularly if you factor in moving goods by air.

    Finally, why don’t you be less selective as to the statements you challenge? I see that, so far, you haven’t got round to answering what I wrote about our “7.4% U.K. growth rate” back in 1973 (actually, according to my source, it was 6.9%).

  • John Marriott 25th Oct '21 - 9:53am

    @Jeff
    And, while we’re at it, where do you (or your ‘facts’) stand on global warming and the efforts to stop it accelerating?

  • Jeff: It is plain to see you despise everything about the EU which is an attitude to which I have never understood, as I have said before the EU may not be perfect but it worked pretty well for us over many years but eventually the negative Brexiteer argument narrowly won the day in the referendum, but I am proud to be British and European and find the unnecessary anti European rhetoric inside the present government extremely unhelpful and I would suppose many of the countries negotiating new deals with us now already had access to our market through the EU.

  • Jeff 25th Oct ’21 – 12:40am…

    Firstly thanks for your ‘Why Vote Leave’ link..I’d actually forgotten how much ‘rubbish’ it was..Everything from the mythical “£350 million a week to the NHS” to the imminent arrival of 90 million Turks, Serbians, etc.: Making it near impossible for nurses, truckers, butchers and argricultural workers has’ turned out nice again’ (that for us oldies)

    I give you BBC reports “”We were paying £1,600 per container in November, this month we’ve been quoted over £10,000,” says Helen White….The founder of start-up Houseof.com, which imports lighting from China, says the rise in shipping costs means she’s making a loss on what she sells.. and you respond with an advertisment for a removal firm.. .

    As for your “The Australian trade deal is still being negotiated. It will be larger and more beneficial for the UK than most of the EU trade deals we rolled over.” strange then how, by the government’s own admission, the savings add up to £34m a year (little more than a pound each per household) and that its deal will only boost UK GDP by up to 0.02% after 15 years..

    Still, as John Marriott suggests, your selective figures and supposition are in keeping with those promises made in ‘Why Vote Leave’:…

  • expats 25th Oct ’21 – 6:00pm:
    …thanks for your ‘Why Vote Leave’ link..I’d actually forgotten how much ‘rubbish’ it was…

    Rubbish or not, Vote Leave’s assertions have turned out to be rather less inaccurate than those of the remain campaign. I’ve recently added yet anther two false assertions to my list…

    ‘Get The Facts’:
    https://web.archive.org/web/20160620220218/https://www.strongerin.co.uk/get_the_facts

    Jobs & opportunities
    […]
    If we leave the EU experts predict that the economic hit would mean up to 950,000 UK jobs could be lost (Source: Confederation of British Industry)

    The Trades Union Congress says the average wage would fall by £38 a week if we left Europe (Source: Trades Union Congress)

    Currently, we have a record number of job vacancies and average wages are rising.

    Everything from the mythical “£350 million a week to the NHS”

    The NHS is now getting around £1,280m more per week than it did in 2016.

    …BBC reports “We were paying £1,600 per container in November, this month we’ve been quoted over £10,000,”..

    Due to Covid crews, containers, and ships are in the wrong places causing extensive price disruption. The market is expected to return to normal within a few months.

    …and you respond with an advertisement for a removal firm…

    So not the cheapest rates. The containers go on the same ships. I cited that page because it has an easy to read table for destinations which shows that it only costs £99 more to send a container to Australia or New Zealand than it does to Spain or Portugal. Distance is but one of many factors.

    …by the government’s own admission, the savings [from the Australian trade deal] add up to £34m a year (little more than a pound each per household)…

    Much of which will be on wine. However, according to the deal’s critics, what’s left of the savings in tariffs will be enough to destroy UK agriculture – an industry which is subsidised by £3 billion pounds a year. As in the remain campaign, people are making contradictory claims which are not credible.

  • John Marriott 26th Oct '21 - 9:35am

    @Jeff
    In the immortal words of St Greta; “Blah, blah, blah”. Now how about answering a few of MY questions? Haven’t you gathered your ‘facts’ or are you just going to ignore me? That lamp post is proving very useful.

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