Scottish farmers and environmental targets could be ‘sacrificial lambs’ in Australia trade deal
Date: 22 May 2021
The UK government could “throw agriculture and the environment under the bus” in an Australian trade deal, campaigners have warned.
Global Justice Now, which campaigns on trade rules, has warned that Scottish farmers and environmental targets could be the “sacrificial lambs” in a “rushed attempt” to secure a trade deal.
The group has called on UK government trade minister Liz Truss to say whether the deal would contain a corporate court system, which would allow Australian companies like EMR Capital, the company behind the Cumbrian coal mine, to sue the UK government for doing what it needs to do on climate change.
Liz Murray, head of Scottish campaigns, at Global Justice Now, said:
“Scottish farmers and environmental targets could be the sacrificial lambs in the UK government’s rushed attempt to get a deal done and dusted in time for a photo op when the leaders of the G7 countries are here in the UK in June, as ministers desperately try to prove that post-Brexit Britain is still a global player.
“The UK government keeps telling us that we should trust it to keep our standards on animal welfare, pesticides and food safety in trade deals, but when push comes to shove, they seem ready to throw agriculture and the environment under the bus.
“Ministers must also say whether this deal includes a corporate court system, which would allow Australian companies like EMR Capital, who are behind the Cumbrian coal mine, to sue the UK government outside of the national legal system for enacting environmental policies.”
Notes for editors
Global Justice Now is a democratic social justice organisation working as part of a global movement to challenge the powerful and create a more just and equal world. We mobilise people in the UK for change, and act in solidarity with those fighting injustice, particularly in the global south. http://www.globaljustice.org.uk
Joe Karp-Sawey, Media Manager, Global Justice Now
Photo: Ian Woolner/Shutterstock