To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what decisions have been reached on the exemption from the European Community clawback tax on British exports of lamb to third countries.
I am pleased to report that, following the representations we have been making on behalf of the industry, the Community has adopted a new regulation, recently published in the Official Journal, which extends the exemption on clawback of variable premium on Great Britain exports for a further year from 4 January 1988. This is an important measure which will help maintain and expand our lamb and mutton exports.The picture on exports is encouraging all round. Taking third country and Community markets together, we now export over 20 per cent. of our lamb and mutton production, worth some £133 million in 1986. An increase is forecast for 1987.I attach high priority to ensuring that we sustain and improve further our exports.