John Alty, Director General, Trade Policy at the Department for International Trade (DIT), will brief Asia House corporate members on the process of delivering an independent trade policy for the UK once it leaves the EU. One of the major priorities for his team is to establish World Trade Organization (WTO) membership for the UK once is has left the EU.
In February 2017, DIT outlined the issues that will affect the UK’s negotiation of trade deals post-Brexit. These include the changes needed to the UK’s WTO commitments, as well as the implications on relying on WTO rules when trading internationally after the UK leaves the EU. Currently, the EU represents the UK and other EU Member states at WTO level. As a result, UK import tariffs and UK market access commitments applicable to trade in services are covered as part of the EU’s schedule. As such, once the UK leaves the EU, the country will need to submit its own WTO schedules. Renegotiating the UK’s own commitments after Brexit could prove to be a complicated and lengthy process.
DIT will also need to ensure that the UK is well positioned to maximise its opportunities to trade with the rest of the world after UK-EU negotiations have been undertaken. Preliminary discussions have already begun with Australia, New Zealand and India, and countries including the United States, China and Brazil have all expressed interest in striking a deal with the UK.
Alty has been Director General of Trade Policy at DIT since July 2016. He joined from the Intellectual Property Office, an Agency of the Business Department, where he was CEO from 2010 to 2016. Prior to that, John was a Director General in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills from 2005 to 2010, and held responsibility for trade and EU policy, together with competition, corporate governance and labour market. He was head of Department of Trade and Industry’s business sectors team from 2002 to 2005.
This briefing will be the third in a series of events at Asia House which will examine the new global trade order. To what extent will the UK’s decision to leave the world’s largest trading bloc shift global architecture? The Asia House programme will assemble decision-makers and influencers to brief corporate members as this new landscape takes shape.
This briefing is for Asia House corporate members only. To register, please contact Conor Paterson in the Business & Policy Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 307 5439.