Us Uk Trade Agreement Negotiations

The latest updates and analysis of the UK-US trade negotiations, and what it means for agriculture, which have been made available to you by the NFU`s EU Exit and International Trade Team. Keep looking for the latest information. This first “virtual” cycle is expected to last two weeks, with future rounds of negotiations to take place over a period of six weeks, i.e. two weeks “on” and four weeks “off”. During the “Off” phase, negotiators will return to their respective government departments to work on all the resulting action points and agree on the strategy and next steps before the next round of negotiations. Negotiations on issues relating to access to the UK market for US food and agricultural products could be particularly controversial. British concerns have long been expressed that US food standards are too generous and allow for practices such as chlorine washing of chicken corpses, hormone treatment of cattle for beef production and certain husbandry practices for pigmeat production, all of which are currently prohibited by EU and UK law. With regard to sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) standards, the UK Government makes it clear that it intends to maintain the UK`s high level of public, animal and plant health, including food safety, and indicates that it is not willing to lower the standards in order to facilitate the import of US food manufactured to lower standards. The U.S. government is working to impose binding and robust SPS commitments to make it clear that each party would be able to establish for itself the level of protection it deems appropriate to protect food safety and plant and animal health in a manner consistent with its international obligations. This indicates that the US government would be prepared to respect the UK`s right to maintain its current standards in this area. However, the U.S. government also emphasizes its intention to promote greater regulatory compatibility in order to reduce burdens related to unnecessary differences in regulation and standards and to eliminate practices that unfairly reduce market access opportunities in the United States or distort agricultural markets to the detriment of the United States, including non-tariff barriers that discriminate against U.S.

agricultural products. This indicates that the US might expect the UK to pre-employ some degree of alignment with UK and US standards to facilitate US agricultural exports. Indeed, the US agricultural lobby is very influential and will insist on maximum access to the UK FOOD market, which could prompt the US government to demand such compromises.