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The COVID-19 pandemic and international trade

Inquiry

Background

  1. UK businesses engaged in international trade are currently experiencing uniquely challenging trading circumstances as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Supply chains are coming under severe pressure while, simultaneously, patterns of demand are deviating from expected trading norms. Concerns are being raised about access to essential goods for both consumers and public authorities.
  2. The UK Government has announced a significant package of financial support for UK businesses which are, or stand to be, negatively affected by the pandemic. The Department for International Trade (DIT) has so far published guidance for UK businesses trading internationally and advice for the freight transport industry relating to the impact of the pandemic.
  3. Several of the UK’s international trading partners, including within the EU’s Single Market, have introduced export bans on certain goods deemed to be essential to their domestic response to the pandemic, such as medical supplies. Restrictions on the movement of people have also been introduced by many countries.

Submit written evidence

The Committee welcomes submissions on some, or all, of the following points by 5pm on Friday 24 April. Submissions made prior to this deadline would be gratefully received. Submissions should be made using the COVID-19 pandemic and international trade inquiry page.

Terms of Reference

  • What impact will the global COVID-19 pandemic have on UK businesses trading internationally, in the short-, medium- and long-term?
  • How effectively has the Government responded, both in the UK and in overseas posts, to the short-term negative impact of the pandemic on UK businesses trading internationally? What further steps could be taken to mitigate this impact?
  • What medium- and long-term negative impacts could arise from the pandemic for UK businesses trading internationally? What steps could the Government take to mitigate these impacts?
  • What steps can UK businesses take to mitigate the negative impacts of the pandemic on international trade?
  • How best can the UK Government facilitate trade in essential goods during the pandemic?
  • How should the Department for International Trade work with the rest of central government, as well as devolved, local and regional government, to deliver a coordinated response to the pandemic?
  • How can the UK Government engage with countries at the World Trade Organization and bilateral trading partners – including those with which the UK has a significant trading relationship or one facilitating trade in priority goods – to promote international cooperation and a coordinated global response to the pandemic?
  • How might the pandemic impact global trade patterns and international supply chains in the long-term?

Work news

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Government response – The COVID-19 pandemic and international trade
International Trade Committee publishes Government Response
7 October 2020
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Trade policy response to COVID-19 examined in Committee report
International Trade Committee publishes wide ranging report on impact of covid-19 to international trade
29 July 2020
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Committee questions Secretary of State on trade agreement negotiations and COVID-19 response
Questions will explore the progress of negotiations, the future of DIT, and the department's role in the Government's response to COVID-19
23 June 2020
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Global trade policy response to COVID-19 pandemic examined
International Trade Committee hears from academics, journalists and Ambassador Alan Wolff, Deputy-Director General of the World Trade Organization
4 June 2020
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Impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on Foreign Direct Investment examined
International Trade Committee examines impact of COVID-19 on UK trade in services and Foreign Direct Investment
12 May 2020
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Impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on trade in manufactured goods examined
The International Trade Committee continues its inquiry examining the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic
5 May 2020
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International Trade Committee examines impact of COVID-19 on UK food supplies
Committee will question academics and representatives from the British Retail Consortium and Food and Drink Federation
28 April 2020
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Impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on supply of medical goods examined
International Trade Committee examines the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic on international trade
20 April 2020
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Impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic on international trade inquiry launched
The International Trade Committee launches an inquiry examining the impact of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic on international trade
30 March 2020
Total results 9 (page 1 of 1)