To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what assessment her Department has made of the potential effect of the UK-Australian Free Trade Agreement on the economy of (a) Wakefield and (b) West Yorkshire.
21 June 2021
The scoping assessment published in June 2020 assessed the potential impacts of a deal, before negotiations started, under two illustrative scenarios. It found the region of Yorkshire and the Humber benefited in all modelled scenarios.
More than 1,200 businesses in Yorkshire and the Humber exported more than £240 million worth of goods to Australia in 2020. As part of an Free Trade Agreement, manufacturers could benefit from the removal of a 5% tariff on metals exports, and broader tariff elimination could benefit the machinery and transport equipment industries in the region, whilst the removal of tariffs of up to 5% on food and drink could provide new opportunities for Yorkshire and the Humber’s outstanding food and drink producers. Provisions on digital and services will also open up new opportunities for the service sector.
Further to this, the Department for International Trade is establishing a trade hub in Darlington as part of a new strategy to boost exports and bring the benefits of the government’s global trade policy to the whole of the UK, including Yorkshire and the North East, providing exporters with a stronger feed into UK trade policy, to take better advantage of opportunities in fast-growing markets like the Indo-Pacific region.