Trade Bill — After Clause 2 — Parliamentary Approval of Trade Agreements — 19 Jan 2021 at 17:45

The majority of MPs voted against encouraging parliamentary consideration of free trade agreements.

MPs were considering the Trade Bill.[1][2]

The motion supported by the majority of MPs in this vote was:

  • That this House disagrees with Lords amendment 1.

Lords amendment 1 stated[3]:

  • Insert the following new Clause—
  • Parliamentary approval of trade agreements
  • (1) Nothing in this section restricts the power conferred by Her Majesty’s prerogative to commence, conduct negotiations towards and then conclude a trade agreement.
  • (2) If a decision has been made by the Secretary of State to commence negotiations towards a free trade agreement, a statement must be made to both Houses of Parliament.
  • (3) Negotiations for that trade agreement may not proceed until the Secretary of State has laid draft negotiating objectives in respect of that agreement before Parliament, and a motion endorsing draft negotiating objectives has been approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament.
  • (4) Prior to the draft negotiating objectives being laid, the Secretary of State must—
  • (a) consult each devolved authority on the content of the draft negotiating objectives, and
  • (b) produce a sustainability impact assessment including, but not limited to, an assessment of the impact of the proposed negotiating objectives on human, animal or plant life or health, animal welfare, environmental protection, human rights and equalities, and employment and labour.
  • (5) A sustainability impact assessment under subsection (4)(b) must include—
  • (a) a statement on how the proposed trade agreement will advance the meeting of the Sustainable Development Goals; and
  • (b) a plan to maintain UK levels of statutory protection on the protection of human, animal or plant life or health, animal welfare, :environmental protection, human rights and equalities, and employment and labour.
  • (6) The Secretary of State must inform both Houses of Parliament, and any Select Committee charged by the relevant House with scrutinising trade negotiations in a manner and to an extent agreed with the Committee, of developments in the negotiations, but this does not affect the power of the Secretary of State to conduct negotiations as the Secretary of State considers appropriate.
  • (7) For the purposes of subsection (6), “developments” means—
  • (a) a pause in negotiations;
  • (b) an ending of negotiations;
  • (c) the conclusion of a negotiated round of discussions;
  • (d) the decision to agree in principle an agreement; or
  • (e) other necessary aspects of the negotiations of which the Secretary of State considers it necessary to inform Parliament.
  • (8) The United Kingdom may not become a signatory to a free trade agreement to which this section applies unless a draft of the agreement in the terms in which it is to be presented for signature by parties to the agreement has been laid before, and approved by, a resolution of each House of Parliament.
  • (9) Before a Minister of the Crown moves a resolution to approve the text of a proposed free trade agreement in either House of Parliament, the Secretary of State must—
  • (a) consult each devolved authority on the text of the proposed agreement, and
  • (b) lay before Parliament an independent impact assessment of the agreement including, but not limited to, the requirements in subsection (4).
  • (10) In this section—
  • “devolved authority” has the meaning given in section 4(1) of this Act;
  • “free trade agreement” means any agreement which is—
  • (a) within the definition given in section 4(1) of this Act, and
  • (b) an agreement between the United Kingdom and one or more partners that includes components that facilitate the trade of goods, services or intellectual property;
  • “UK levels of statutory protection” means levels of protection provided for by or under any—
  • (a) primary legislation
  • (b) subordinate legislation, or
  • (c) retained direct EU legislation, which has effect in the United Kingdom, or the relevant part of the United Kingdom, on the date on which the sustainability impact assessment is produced.”

Subclause (1) appears at odds with elements of the remainder of the provision, presumably the effect of Subclause (1) is to reduce the impact of the remainder of the provision.


Debate in Parliament |

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 (Aye)Minority (No)BothTurnout
Alliance0 10100.0%
Con344 (+2 tell) 11097.8%
DUP8 00100.0%
Green0 10100.0%
Independent0 40100.0%
Lab0 197 (+2 tell)099.5%
LDem0 110100.0%
PC0 30100.0%
SDLP0 20100.0%
SNP0 470100.0%
Total:352 277098.6%

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

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

Peter AldousWaveneyConno
Tracey CrouchChatham and AylesfordConno
David DavisHaltemprice and HowdenConno
Jonathan DjanoglyHuntingdonConno
Roger GaleNorth ThanetCon (front bench)no
Neil HudsonPenrith and The BorderCon (front bench)no
Jason McCartneyColne ValleyConno
Bob NeillBromley and ChislehurstCon (front bench)no
Bob SeelyIsle of WightCon (front bench)no
John StevensonCarlisleCon (front bench)no
Julian SturdyYork OuterCon (front bench)no

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