PM meeting with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison: 15 June 2021

Henrietta Brewer
June 16, 2021

His comments came following reports the United Kingdom had offered Australia a deal which would see a 15-year transition to zero-tariffs and zero-quotas.

The UK government said in a statement that the deal eliminates tariffs on all British goods "in the first major trade deal negotiated from scratch" since the country left the European Union.

Johnson and his Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison, appeared outside Downing Street on Tuesday in a jovial mood, underlining the benefits each county would receive in the deal and stressing the long ties between the two nations.

British farmers will be protected by a cap on tariff-free imports for 15 years, using tariff rate quotas and other safeguards.

Australian environmental standards are also an issue. Although numerous provisions are rolled over, it represents a truly "ground up" deal, just half a year into Britain's time as a newly-independent trading nation.

"Quite simply, the agreement fails our farmers, and it fails consumers who care about animal welfare standards".

The agreement, which could boost the Australian economy by up to $1.3billion each year, will be formally announced on Tuesday and gives beef and lamb exporters the chance to move away from the volatile Chinese market.

The government listed out the benefits of the deal as helping Scotland by removing tariffs of up to 5 per cent on Scotch whisky; tariffs will be removed and customs procedures simplified on machinery and manufacturing goods; and auto manufacturers in the midlands and north of England, including Tata Motors owned Jaguar Land Rover, will see tariffs of up to 5 per cent cut, expected to boost the demand for their exports.

Australian Minister for Trade David Littleproud declined to reveal specifics but said Australian farmers would benefit from the deal.

"They were", Mr Morrison said.

Farmers are concerned that a tariff-free trade deal with Australia will cause "irreversible damage" to Welsh agriculture.

"I am sure that negotiators for New Zealand, Canada, USA and Mexico will all want to see at least this level of access as they negotiate free trade agreements with the UK Government and the cumulative impact of these increased agri-food imports, even if they are staggered, needs to be carefully weighed up by government". "This is an agreement with great ambition for both countries".

Mr Davies said: "It is vital that the statutory Trade and Agriculture Commission is set-up to critically examine the detail of this free trade agreement as it is finalised".

Morrison's wife Jennifer was also present for the private audience.

"Apart from the extra checks that will apply following the trade agreement reached last December, the threat to our markets is the biggest fallout for Irish farmers from the vote almost five years ago", he said.

The UK hopes to conclude more trade deals in the Asia Pacific region.

Other reports by iNewsToday