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27 June 2017

Dr Peter Holmes Reader in Economics at the University of Sussex and Fellow of the UKTPO

The UK government’s new approach to trade policy towards developing countries has just been released in a DFID document that has been widely commented on.  The government’s proposals are welcome, but yet they are not quite as generous as they may seem.

A Bloomberg piece says, optimistically: “The government promises improved access to U.K. markets for the world’s poorest countries”. However the only concrete promise is that

around 48 countries across the globe, from Bangladesh to Sierra Leone, Haiti and Ethiopia will continue to benefit from duty-free exports into the UK on all goods other than arms and ammunition, known as ‘everything but arms.”

In other words, the UK pledges to maintain existing arrangements for the poorest countries currently benefiting from the EU’s Everything but Arms deal (EBA). This amounts to simply maintaining the status quo for this group and is not actually an improvement.

(more…)

June 27th, 2017

Posted In: UK - Non EU

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