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Free Trade Agreement: Australia

Volume 681: debated on Thursday 8 October 2020

Australia is a key and proud ally of the United Kingdom, a country with shared beliefs in democracy and free trade. We are working closely at pace with our Australian friends to secure a deal that will benefit both countries, and we will reach a gold standard agreement to lead the world in free trade.

My right hon. Friend knows that Teesside has a long history of exporting to Australia, including a small project known as the Sydney harbour bridge. Can she assure me that, as we leave the EU, Redcar and Cleveland, particularly the steel and chemical industry, will be at the forefront of her mind in future trade talks?

Redcar and Cleveland are a key priority as we negotiate the Australia deal. There are 13,000 small and medium-sized enterprises in the United Kingdom that already export to Australia, and I see lots of opportunities for them to benefit from our close trading relationship, including in the areas of steel and chemicals, food and drink and digital and data.