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Politics & Law Series: Expert Comment

Professor David Collins gives oral evidence before Parliamentary Committee

The City Law School Professor of International Economic Law gives evidence to the House of Commons’ International Trade Committee
by John Stevenson (Senior Communications Officer)

Professor of International Economic Law, Professor David Collins, gave oral evidence to the House of Commons’ International Trade Committee on June 10th.

293398He appeared on a panel to discuss UK Trade Strategy and Scrutiny as part of an inquiry into UK Trade negotiations.

The International Trade Committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure, administration and policy of the Department for International Trade and its associated public bodies.

Moribund

Professor Collins, who regularly discusses UK trade strategy in the context of Brexit said that there was a need for the UK to “revisit the World Trade Organisation’s Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), which has been moribund since 2016.”

TiSA is currently being negotiated by 23 members of the World Trade Organization (WTO), including the EU. Together, the participating countries account for 70% of world trade in services. TiSA is based on the WTO's General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), which involves all WTO members.  The key provisions of the GATS – scope, definitions, market access, national treatment and exemptions – are also found in TiSA.

Professor Collins also suggested to the Committee that it should look at mutual recognition agreements, which take place outside of the context of free trade agreements. He cited the Law Society of England and Wales as an example of a professional organisation which has signed mutual recognition agreements with various bodies of a similar nature in several parts of the world.

To watch the whole Parliamentary Committee session please visit this weblink.

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