The Which? poll has revealed that a quarter of the consumers that took part to the survey declared that they haven’t been informed in regards to the impact of new trade deals.
After the UK was able to look into new trading terms, the International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss has been assigned to establish deals with worldwide trade partners.
But while many agreements have been settled, including those with Australia and Japan, the British people said that they haven’t been informed about all the implications of these new agreements, according to a new survey. The study also shows that 67% out of 3,000 UK adults declared they have received too little information about trade deals, with only 7% recording they knew that the UK had a deal in place with Japan.
The dissatisfaction is higher in Northern Ireland as the majority of the respondents said that the government left them in the dark regarding the new trade deals and their implications. Also, the people in Wales and Scotland are not very confident that Westminster ministers are closing trade deals in their best interest.
Regarding the free trade deal with Australia, there are voices that express concern, as food coming from Australia is not meeting the same high standards in the UK.
The head of consumer rights and food policy at Which? Sue Davies, suggested there should be a “consumer chapter” included in each future trade deal to inform people about the benefits and changes negotiated, so they can understand the impact reflected in their everyday lives.
“The success of future agreements will be judged on what they deliver for ordinary people in their everyday lives, not just the export opportunities they provide,” she said.
“Our research shows that consumers feel they have been left in the dark about what trade deals will mean for them.
“The Government must take this opportunity to communicate transparently and openly with the public about trade negotiations and push for a consumer chapter to be included in future deals which reflects the issues that are most important to consumers.”
Labour’s shadow international trade secretary Emily Thornberry said: “This survey should be a wake-up call for Liz Truss. The British people do not want her undermining our food standards, selling out our farming communities, and negotiating trade deals on our behalf without telling us what they mean.”
A spokesperson for the Department for International Trade declared: “Free trade will grow our economy in every part of the UK and deliver jobs, better living standards and higher wages.
“As an independent trading nation, we are striking ambitious deals that will not only support our key industries, but also benefit consumers who will be able to enjoy more choice and better value thanks to the tariffs we are cutting.
“Our climate change and environment policies are some of the most ambitious in the world, and we will not sign trade deals that compromise our high environmental protections, animal welfare and food safety standards.”
Source: Evening Standard
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