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UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

Volume 684: debated on Thursday 19 November 2020

What steps her Department has taken to ensure that (a) farmers and (b) food producers in Wales can benefit from the UK-Japan comprehensive economic partnership agreement. (908996)

The UK-Japan CEPA will benefit farmers and food producers in Wales through lower tariffs than would have been the case without an agreement. It also allows more UK goods to access preferential tariffs than under the EU-Japan agreement, thanks to new rules of origin. New protections for more iconic Welsh food products may also be possible, including for Welsh lamb and coracle-caught sewin.

Twelve Welsh geographic indicator products have been protected in the UK-Japan deal, on which I warmly congratulate the Department. I am particularly pleased to hear the Minister mention Welsh lamb. Can he reassure me that those products will be respected and protected in future trade deals, particularly with the US and Australia?

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. There is the potential inclusion of around 70 geographic indicators, 12 of which are from Wales—she is quite right—including Welsh beef, Welsh lamb, Welsh wine, cider, perry, Caerphilly cheese, Carmarthen ham and others. One of our key objectives is to be able to sell Welsh lamb into the United States—British lamb overall is not currently allowed into the United States—but we will be fighting to get an improvement in Welsh lamb exports around the globe.