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Truss formally launches Trade and Agriculture Commission at Whitehall event

International Trade Secretary Liz Truss will formally launch the Trade and Agriculture Commission at an event in Whitehall tomorrow (Tuesday July 28).

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Truss formally launches Trade and Agriculture Commission at Whitehall event

Several groups which have no representation on the commission, such as the National Sheep Association and RSPCA, were invited to the launch to talk about how they can help support the new body.

 

The British Veterinary Association, which complained about a lack of veterinary expertise on the commission after its membership was published, will also attend.

 

As part of the event, the first meeting of the commission will take place, where members will discuss the detailed aims and scope of their work, the terms of engagement needed for success and a provisional timetable and structure of working groups.

 

Defra Secretary George Eustice will also deliver a video message to attendees.


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Ms Truss said: “We are stepping up our engagement with all the groups who have an interest in Britain’s agriculture trade policy.

 

“The Trade and Agriculture Commission will ensure the voices of the public and industry are heard, and that their interests are advanced and protected.

 

“It will advise the Government on how Britain can remain a world-leader in animal welfare and environmental standards, and how we can seize new export opportunities for our farmers.

 

“This is about putting British farming at the heart of our trade policy and ensuring our agriculture industry is among the most competitive and innovative in the world.”

 

Charged

 

The commission will report directly to the Trade Secretary and has been charged with producing a series of advisory recommendations at the end of its six months’ work.

 

Concerns have already been raised about the lack of trade and environmental expertise on the commission and its independence from Government.

 

Its chairman, Tim Smith, was also criticised for calling for an end to ‘alarmism’ in the debate around standards on his first day in the job.

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