NFU President Minette Batters has urged both the UK and EU to prioritise reaching a tariff-free, quota-free trade deal as soon as possible, after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the UK must now prepare for no trade deal with the EU from 1 January 2021.
He also said the EU have ‘refused to negotiate’ properly and are ‘not willing’ to offer similar trade terms to the EU’s agreement with Canada.
Mrs Batters said: “It is critically important that both the UK and EU continue to negotiate on a free trade agreement and prioritise securing a tariff-free, quota-free deal as soon as possible. More than 60% of our agri-food exports go to the EU, making it British farming’s largest trading partner. Reaching a deal is critical to maintaining those trade links.
“There will be significant disruption for British food and farming if there is no deal at the end of the transition period.
“The government needs to be clear with businesses about the impact of no-deal and address many outstanding issues, such as ensuring the necessary authorisations are in place for agri-food exports and guaranteeing there will be sufficient financial support, advice and resource for businesses, provided in a timely manner.”
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