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Harriett Baldwin questions Government on future free trade deals


3rd February 2020

Following the Foreign Secretary’s statement on global Britain, Harriett Baldwin asks about the structured withdrawal of equivalence for financial services and the arbitration mechanism.

Harriett Baldwin (West Worcestershire) (Con)

The Prime Minister’s speech was really clear in giving examples of how far above the level playing field the UK already is. In seeking a Canada-style free trade agreement, along the lines of what I think is chapter 15 on financial services equivalence, will the Foreign Secretary tell us a little more about what is mentioned in the written ministerial statement—the structured withdrawal of equivalence for financial services and who would arbitrate on that?

Dominic Raab

We have said not only in the written statement but in the political declaration that we want financial services to proceed on the basis of the kind of ​co-operation that involves recognition of the equivalence of regulation. We think that is the best approach for the UK but also for the relationship with the EU.

The dispute resolution mechanism will be tailored to the different fields and sectors covered by the FTA and the broader areas of co-operation. However, in the case of binding resolution, we have been clear that that would involve arbitration with both parties contributing. Typically, a chair is selected by the arbitrators who have been nominated, and that does not involve the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

Hansard

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