1. Through this inquiry the Committee will scrutinise the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).
2. The Committee is particularly interested in finding out how this agreement will affect people and businesses across the UK; the economic, social and environmental impacts of the agreement; and how the agreement differs from the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement.
3. This Committee intends to provide parliamentary scrutiny of the trade agreement by:
· inviting written evidence from interested stakeholders;
· speaking to expert witnesses and the Secretary of State in oral evidence sessions; and
· publishing a short report on the agreement, in which the Committee may recommend that the agreement is debated in the House of Commons Chamber.
4. Under the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010 (CRAG), after the agreement is laid before UK Parliament there is a period of 21 sitting days in which either House may choose to pass a motion stating that it should not be ratified. The Committee intends during that 21-day period to publish a report on the agreement.
5. The Government has said it will endeavour to provide time for the agreement to be debated on the floor of the House of Commons should the Committee recommend such a debate.
6. Due to the limited time available to scrutinise the agreement, the Committee will not be undertaking a full and comprehensive analysis of the agreement text. Instead the Committee will seek evidence from stakeholders, and publish a short report summarising the views it hears.