Tuesday 12th May 2020

(2 months ago)

Commons Chamber

Department for International Trade
Ruth Edwards Portrait Ruth Edwards (Rushcliffe) (Con) - Hansard

11. What her policy is on protectionism. [902524]

Elizabeth Truss Portrait The Secretary of State for International Trade (Elizabeth Truss) - Hansard

As we emerge from the Covid crisis, it is vital that we keep free trade flowing. That is why the UK has been making that case with G20 Trade Ministers and the WTO. We have another G20 meeting this Thursday, where I want to see further action to cut tariffs on medical products, and for longer-term WTO reform.

Ruth Edwards Portrait Ruth Edwards [V] - Hansard

Stilton producers, such as the excellent dairies of Cropwell Bishop and Colston Bassett in my constituency, face a 25% tariff when they export to the US market. Can my right hon. Friend tell me what progress has been made, in the first week of negotiations, to reduce those tariffs?

Elizabeth Truss Portrait Elizabeth Truss - Hansard

We are determined to get those tariffs reduced and removed on products like Stilton, and the brilliant producers in my hon. Friend’s constituency. The Stilton Cheese Makers’ Association has backed a US deal, saying that a US free trade agreement will help recognise Stilton cheese further in the US, and bring down some of the existing barriers that we are currently facing.