UK growers and suppliers invited to shape trading future

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Consultation launched by cross party commission.

MEMBERS of the UK potato growing and supply sector are being invited to contribute to an industry-wide consultation looking at how industry challenges should be addressed by Government over the next decade.

The consultation has been launched to gather evidence on the biggest issues facing the potato and other industries in the post-Brexit landscape as the UK Government negotiates new trade agreements.

With the UK economy rocked by a pandemic, supply chain disruption and an energy crisis, businesses across all sectors are struggling to overcome the added challenges created by the post-Brexit trading environment.

Recent estimates suggest that UK GDP is 5.5% smaller today than if Brexit had not happened, while this week it was revealed that the UK’s departure is directly responsible for a shortfall of 330,000 EU workers, with the figure as high as 8% in some industries, according to the cross-party UK Trade and Business Commission which was launched in April 2021 to provide independent scrutiny of the UK’s trade deals with Europe and the rest of the world. 

Findings from the commission's consultation will be included in a new trading framework for the decade ahead, which will include short term and long term recommendations, and will be submitted to Ministers, with the commission pressuring the UK Government to adopt the proposals and commit to action to help the growing sector.

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The trading framework will also propose new guidelines for future trade negotiations to ensure opportunities do not come at the cost of existing British industries.

Written evidence can be submitted to the UK Trade and Business Commission through the online portal here.

Co-convener of the UK Trade and Business Commission, Peter Norris, said: “This landmark, economy-wide consultation offers businesses and industries a valuable opportunity to make themselves heard and reshape the UKs trading framework for the decade ahead.”

Hilary Benn MP, also a Co-convener of the UK Trade and Business Commission, added: “It is clear that Brexit and its subsequent trade deals have created many more problems for UK businesses than opportunities. This consultation will enable the day-to-day experience of British firms to influence proposals for a new trading relationship. We are looking not only for answers to immediate problems but also ideas for future trade agreements which can create opportunities for both established and new British export businesses.”

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