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Lords considers Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill at committee stage

24 January 2023

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Members of the House of Lords undertook their line by line examination of the Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill in committee stage on Monday 23 January.

The Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill will implement in UK domestic law the government's obligations in the Free Trade Agreements with Australia and New Zealand.

Line by line examination

Committee stage is the first chance to check the bill in detail and make changes.

Proposed changes  

Members speaking at committee stage put forward amendments (PDF) (changes) to the bill to be discussed . 

The amendments covered a range of subjects including: 

  • assessing the impact of the legislation on UK farmers, the market for food in the UK and food safety standards
  • requiring impact assessments on small businesses, labour rights, climate change and the NHS
  • ensuring changes made to the bill won't be replaced by provisions under the Procurement Bill which is currently progressing through the House of Commons
  • adding a 'sunset clause' to the legislation allowing it to expire after a given amount of time.

Get involved 

How to follow 

Explore further information

Read background on the bill in the Lords Library briefing on the Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill.

Next steps

Report stage, an opportunity to closely scrutinise elements of the bill and make changes, is yet to be scheduled.

What's happened so far?

Second reading: Monday 9 January

Members discussed the main issues in the bill and drew attention to specific areas where they thought amendments (changes) were needed during second reading.  Topics covered during the debate included:

  • environmental standards in the UK, Australia and New Zealand
  • non-tariff barriers to trade
  • protections for UK farmers.

Members speaking

Lord Johnson of Lainston (Conservative), Minister for Investment, opened the debate and responded on behalf of the government.

Members speaking in the debate include:

Lord Swire (Conservative), Deputy Chair of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council and former Foreign Office minister, made his maiden speech in the House of Lords during the debate.

Catch up

Find out more about the issues discussed: catch up on Parliament TV or read the Lords Hansard transcript. 

Image: AdobeStock