CLA responds to EU trade talks

05 June 2020

Responding to the conclusion of the 4th round of FTA negotiations between the UK and the European Union, Country Land and Business Association President Mark Bridgeman said:

“It is of great concern to farmers in the UK, and I’m sure the European Union too, that these talks are making such limited progress.

“The EU sells £33bn of agricultural products to the UK each year – almost £20bn more than we sell to them - so the Prime Minister is absolutely right to have confidence in the value of our market.  But make no mistake, without a quality free trade agreement thousands of farmers both in the UK and the EU would go out of business, with all the devastation to lives and communities that go with it.

“We understand a degree of posturing is inevitable, but no one – on either side of the negotiating table – should forget what is at risk.  We strongly encourage both sides to return to the table as quickly as possible.”

The European Union presently exports €37bn (£33bn) of food products to the United Kingdom each year.  Meanwhile, the United Kingdom exports £13.7bn (€15.3bn) of food products to the European Union.