Who is likely to be affected
International and domestic participants in trade remedy transition reviews and reconsiderations of transition reviews, including but not limited to individuals, manufacturers, importers, downstream users, trade organisations, trade unions and public bodies.
General description of the measure
The measure will amend the existing trade remedies legislative regime to allow the Secretary of State for International Trade to “call in” transition reviews and reconsiderations of transition reviews conducted by the Trade Remedies Authority (TRA). After calling a particular case in, the Secretary of State will be responsible for determining the outcome of the review or reconsideration.
This policy is intended to ensure that the Secretary of State for International Trade can act effectively in the interest of UK industry when considering the impact on the UK economy of:
a) dumped or subsidised imports; and/or
b) unforeseen surges in imports, and to respond to these events by applying the appropriate duties on such imports in order to mitigate any injury to UK industry.
Background to the measure
Trade remedies, also known as trade defence measures, are additional tariffs or quotas imposed to protect domestic industries.
Following the UK exit from the EU, the government transitioned 43 trade defence measures that had been implemented by the EU during the UK’s membership, and were live at the point of the UK’s exit. The TRA is now reviewing these 43 measures to ensure they are suitable for the UK economy. The TRA is responsible for collecting and analysing evidence relating to trade remedies cases, and its functions include providing a recommendation to the Secretary of State for International Trade on whether a measure should be retained, revoked, extended or varied. The Secretary of State for International Trade may only take a decision accepting or rejecting the TRA recommendation in its entirety.
In light of the reviews completed already, it has become clear that in some instances greater ministerial involvement is required, in particular where there may be wider factors that the TRA is not in a position or mandated to take account of. The call in power is designed to address this situation. After calling a particular case in, the Secretary of State will be responsible for determining the outcome of the review or reconsideration.
The provision is treated as having come in to force on 3 November 2021. Secondary legislation will subsequently be made relating to the exercise of the power.
The current legislative framework is set out in:
a) The Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018
b) The Trade Act 2021, which establishes the Trade Remedies Authority
c) The following subordinate legislation:
- The Trade Remedies (Increase in Imports Causing Serious Injury to UK Producers) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 [SI: 2019/449]
- The Trade Remedies (Dumping and Subsidisation) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 [SI: 2019/450]
- The Trade Remedies (Reconsideration and Appeals) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 [SI: 2019/910]
Legislation in Finance Bill 2020-21 will introduce a power to enable the Secretary of State to make new regulations or amend existing secondary legislation. This would allow for the amendment of:
a) Part 9 of The Trade Remedies (Increase in Imports Causing Serious Injury to UK Producers) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019
b) Part 12 of The Trade Remedies (Dumping and Subsidisation) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019
c) The TRA reconsiderations of transition reviews under The Trade Remedies (Reconsideration and Appeals) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019
Summary of impacts
This change relates to the mechanism of decision making on transitioned trade remedies measures and is therefore expected to have no (or negligible) impact.
Exchequer impact (£m)
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This measure is not expected to have an Exchequer impact.
This measure is not expected to have any significant economic impacts.
The terms used in this section are defined in line with the Office for Budget Responsibility’s indirect effects process. This will apply where, for example, a measure affects inflation or growth. You can request further details regarding this measure at the email address listed below.
Impact on individuals, households and families
It is expected that for the most part, only the businesses involved in a “called in” trade remedies transition review will be affected by the measure. This change relates to the decision making mechanism and is therefore expected to have no (or negligible) direct impact on individuals or households. The impact of additional trade remedy import duty on downstream users is considered during the process for investigating each trade remedy.
The measure is not expected to impact on family formation, stability or breakdown.
This change relates to the decision making mechanism on transitioned trade remedies measures and is therefore not expected to have equalities impacts. The impact of additional trade remedy import duty on downstream users is considered during the process for investigating each trade remedy.
Impact on business including civil society organisations
This measure is expected to have no impact on businesses. Businesses engaged in trade remedies investigations will continue to gather and submit the relevant evidence as previously, and as before the measure was introduced. There will be no change to what businesses do as a result of this measure. Cases are product specific (so only businesses with a specific interest in the given product will be affected) and participation in a case is optional. There is not expected to be any impact on civil society organisations.
Operational impact (£m) (HMRC or other)
Given this measure may require increased resourcing to deal with any called in reviews, there is a potential operational impact on both the Department for International Trade and the TRA. The potential cost will depend on the specific circumstances of the exercise of the power.
Other impacts have been considered and none are thought to arise in this context.
Monitoring and evaluation
The measure will be kept under review through communication with affected groups.
For each review, the final conclusion will be published, including the assessment made by the Secretary of State of the impacts of the decision. The appeals procedure applicable to decisions made following a case being called in by the Secretary of State may be addressed in subsequent secondary legislation.
If you have any questions about this change, please contact the Trade Remedies Policy Team at the Department for International Trade via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.