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Would joining the CPTPP benefit UK trade? Lords hear from services sectors

Tuesday 9 March 2021

Tomorrow, the House of Lords International Agreements Committee will hear from the legal, financial, professional and business services sectors on the pros and cons of the UK’s proposed accession to the CPTPP (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership).

Earlier this year, the Government expressed its intention to make pursing accession to the agreement between 11 countries a key part of its trade negotiations programme. This evidence session will focus on the specific benefits that joining the agreement could bring for different services sectors in the UK. It will also seek further clarity on whether any aspects could conflict with UK law or clash with the EU trade agreement, among other potential hurdles.

The online evidence session can be followed live at from 4pm tomorrow (Wednesday 10 March 2021).


  • Catherine Brims, International Policy Advisor, The Law Society of England and Wales
  • Sean McGovern, Board Member, London Market Group and Chief Executive Officer, UK and Lloyd’s at AXA XL
  • James Sibley, Head of International Affairs, The Federation of Small Businesses
  • Sally Jones, Partner, Trade Strategy, Ernst & Young (EY)

Possible questions

  • What is your assessment of the CPTPP agreement? What provisions would benefit businesses the most if the UK acceded?
  • What are the businesses you represent seeking in terms of services market access? Are there any exceptions that could prevent the UK from realising key benefits?
  • What does joining the CPTPP offer the services sector over agreements with individual member countries?
  • Which digital trade provisions in the CPTPP agreement would be most useful to the businesses you represent?
  • What parts of the agreement could benefit SMEs in particular?
  • How useful are the financial services provisions for the insurance sector?
  • Do you foresee any issues with any provisions in the agreement that may conflict with existing UK law or practice, or may clash with the UK’s trade with the EU?
  • What role do you see the UK having in CPTPP in the longer term and how would you like to see the UK shape the agreement over time?

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