UK’s new trade remedies system comes into force

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The UK’s new fully functioning trade remedies system has been established and will help to protect UK businesses from injury caused by unfair trading practices, such as dumping and subsidies, or injury caused by unforeseen surges in imports from 29 March if we leave the EU without a deal.

The Trade Remedies Investigations Directorate (TRID) has been established within the Department for International Trade and will start work from today. TRID will conduct the necessary preparatory work to ensure that we are ready to commence investigations as soon as we leave the EU.

This temporary directorate will administer trade remedies functions until the Trade Remedies Authority (TRA) is legally established as an independent body with the passing of the Trade Bill.

Our priority is to secure Parliamentary support for the deal we have negotiated with the EU, under which UK businesses will continue to benefit from current protections during the Implementation Period. However, establishing the TRID today ensures that British businesses will also be protected from unfair trading practices if we leave without a deal.

Trade remedies allow World Trade Organization (WTO) members to protect domestic industry from injury caused by unfair trading practices, such as dumped or subsidised imports, or from injury caused by unforeseen surges in imports.

Today’s announcement will ensure continued protection for key UK domestic industries in the event of a no deal scenario.

International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox said:

Our own independent trade remedies system will create a level playing field for British industries so they can compete with overseas producers that benefit from unfair trading practices.

This underlines our commitment to ensuring the integrity of the global rules-based trading system as we take control of our independent trade policy for the first time in more than 40 years.

UK businesses can contact TRID if they have evidence of unfair trading practices. Further information on who can submit cases and how they will be considered will be available shortly.

TRID Chief Executive, Claire Bassett said:

The Trade Remedies Investigations Directorate will be at the forefront of ensuring that the UK has the ability to protect UK industry and this is another step forward for us and our readiness to do this important work.

Director General of UK Steel, Gareth Stace, said:

Today’s announcement launching the UK’s trade remedies system is a hugely positive announcement, ensuring the UK has the tools available to protect UK industry from unfair trading practises from day one of Brexit. I cannot overstate the importance of this milestone for the steel sector.

We look forward to working with the new directorate and ultimately the Trade Remedies Authority, once it is up and running. There is much work to do.

Steve Elliott, Chief Executive of the Chemical Industries Association said:

Trade remedies are absolutely critical to defend domestic chemical producers against unfairly priced or subsidised imports. Industry needs the Trade Remedies Investigation Directorate to be fully functional from day 1 after the UK leaves the EU. While our industry still hopes that a deal with the EU will be agreed we must be ready for the circumstance of our leaving with no deal.

Trade Remedy investigations are lengthy, expensive and can be a significant drain on company resources but you have to get them right or chemical companies and their downstream customers will suffer. We welcome the secondary legislation that provides some authority to the TRID carrying out initial activity and we continue to offer support as the team learn their new roles.

The UK’s system will be fully compliant with WTO rules and will put in place robust protections where they are needed, restoring a fair playing field for businesses without imposing unnecessary costs on supply chains or consumers.

The new Directorate is based in Reading and will be responsible for investigating cases of unfair trading practices and unforeseen surges in imports that injure UK businesses. Over 80% of trade remedies staff have now been appointed.

Last week the government published the full list of EU trade remedies measures that will be continued after the UK leaves the EU and takes control of its own trade policy. Trade remedies measures have only been continued in cases where UK business supported the measure and where British businesses produce more than a 1% market share of those particular products sold in the UK.

UK businesses can contact TRID if they suspect a company of dumping goods at below market value, think a government is unfairly subsidising exports or want a temporary tariff to be applied because of an unforeseen surge in imports.

Businesses can find out more information on who can submit cases for review and how they will be considered on GOV.UK.

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