David Martin MEP

Labour Member of the European Parliament and one of the six MEPs representing Scotland in Brussels and Strasbourg

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UK manufacturing sector needs a level playing field and protection from unfair competition

Following today’s Foreign Affairs Council on Trade, David Martin, Labour MEP for Scotland and International Trade Spokesperson for the Socialists and Democrats, said:

“This further setback in reforming the EU’s trade defence instruments will have serious consequences on the lives of thousands of working people and their families. Whilst other countries seem ready for a compromise, due to British stubbornness over the Lesser Duty rule these critical measures have again been delayed and diluted, further threatening EU industry and those that depend on it.

Only yesterday the Chancellor of the Exchequer was saying that Chinese dumping of steel was still a problem. But it appears they are happy to say one thing in public whilst doing the opposite when cloaked by the privacy of the EU Council chamber. At best this is a sign of government disunity and incompetence, at worst it is a wilful deception of the British people.

Mrs. May doesn’t seem to have learned anything from Brexit or Trump’s victory this week. Whether it is the Mid-West rust belt or Britain’s deindustrialised cities and regions, ordinary voters are angry that they’ve been left behind whilst a minority prospers. For the British manufacturing sector to survive and grow again we must guarantee them a level playing field and protect them from unfair competition.”

This follows Wednesday’s proposal by the Commission to amend the 2016 anti-dumping regulation in light of developments in the WTO related to China’s accession protocol. On this subject, Mr Martin said:

“European trade unions were out in force during Wednesday’s demonstrations, alongside steel and other manufacturing companies. On this issue, workers and their employers are united: this new proposal does not address the real and urgent concerns related to overcapacity and dumping.

EU industry needs an anti-dumping methodology which properly reflects the levels of state interference and subsidies in the Chinese economy.”


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