Banff and Buchan MP David Duguid has hosted a roundtable with farmers and NFUS representatives from the northeast to hear from International Trade Minister, Greg Hands address concerns from the Scottish farming sector about the Australian and future free trade deals.
Mr Hands outlined the UK Government’s expectations from a free trade deal with Australia.
He reiterated that currently, Australia does not export large amounts of agricultural products such and beef and lamb into the UK and do not expect that to rise.
The Minister also pointed out that it is more profitable and efficient for Australia to export into the Asian markets than to the UK.
These same Asian markets are predicted to be among the fastest growing economies in coming years, with a growing middle class and rapidly increasing demand for precisely the kind of high quality, high standard food and drink produced in Scotland.
The UK Government has also started negotiations with the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) – a free trade area of 11 Asia-Pacific nations with a combined GDP of £9 trillion.
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