American Food Exports and European Trade Policy — 13 May 1999

Mr Edward Heath MP, Old Bexley and Sidcup did not vote.

I beg to move,

That this House notes that the EU ban on hormonally-modified meat must end on Thursday 13th May 1999 under World Trade Organisation rules and that the USA is threatening massive retaliatory trade sanctions against member states unless this is adhered to; is concerned that the latest scientific evidence raises serious doubts over the safety of these and genetically-modified products, further undermining consumer confidence; deplores the failure of the EU and the USA to pursue agreed research criteria into the efficacy of introducing such products into the food chain, threatening established World Trade Organisation agreements and ignoring the impact on global biodiversity in the long term; and urges the Government to recognise its responsibilities at the forthcoming Millennium Round and ensure that food safety, the protection of biodiversity and assistance to the economies of developing countries are integral to negotiations on the liberalisation of trade.

I beg to move, To leave out from "House" to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof:

'recognises the importance of open markets between the EU and the US, notes that in general the trade relationship is a good one; acknowledges the work being undertaken by the Government in seeking a solution to the banana disputes in a way that is World Trade Organisation compatible and is helpful to British industry and to those countries economically dependent on exports of bananas; welcomes the Government's commitment to find a solution to issues concerning US food exports that is good for the consumer, respects scientific research and avoids protectionism; welcomes the Government's commitment to consider sustainable development issues in its approach to trade issues as well as the interest of developing countries; and endorses the Government's support for comprehensive trade negotiations to be launched at the World Trade Organisation Ministerial meeting in Seattle in late 1999.'.

remain in place, the ability of affected businesses to find alternative customers for their products, the extent to which orders have been brought forward before these measures took effect and local market conditions."--[ Official Report , 11 May 1999; Vol. 331, c. 85 .]

The biotechnology industry's claim that its research is motivated by a need to feed the hungry is clearly unsubstantiated. Few of the foods so far produced are likely to benefit poorer people in the developing world.

In those cases, too, seeds have to be purchased every year. Terminator technology may be an advance, particularly in northern Europe where we would not have to spray chemicals on people out in the fields in the following year.

Question put, That the original words stand part of the Question:--

The House divided: Ayes 38, Noes 300.

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 000.0%
Ind0 1050.0%
Lab300 (+2 tell) 0072.8%
LDem0 37 (+2 tell)084.8%
Total:300 38054.7%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

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NameConstituencyPartyVote
no rebellions

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