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Britain sets out plan to stimulate trade with developing economies.

The UK Government is launching a consultation on new trading rules by lowering tariffs and simplifying rules to promote freer global commerce and help countries out of poverty as well as the British businesses and consumers at the same time.

The government will detail the Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS) in a consultation document and builds on an existing European Union scheme that Britain was part of before leaving the bloc at the end of last year. The DCTS is a major opportunity to grow free and fair trade with developing nations.

The proposed scheme would apply to 70 qualifying countries currently including Laos as one of the countries listed in the LDCs. The scheme would also include improvements such as lower tariffs and simpler rules of origin requirements for countries exporting to the UK. The scheme will allow countries to diversify their exports and grow their economies, while British households and businesses benefit from lower prices and more choice.

Please help us filling in the questionnaire to support the UK in setting out preferential market access for Laos 🙏🏻

The UK currently operates a similar scheme rolled over from the EU, but as an independent trading nation can now take a simpler, more generous, pro-growth approach to trading with developing countries.

It will also help lower costs for UK businesses, leading to lower prices for consumers across a range of everyday products, by reducing tariffs on imports from low income and lower middle-income countries. For example, this could mean lowering tariffs on products including rice from Pakistan and trainers from Nigeria. The scheme also aims to simplify the “rules of origin” that determine where a product with a cross-border supply chain is made for taxation purposes.

“Trade fundamentally empowers people and has done more than any single policy in history to lift millions of people around the world out of poverty”, the International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss said.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab added “Bangladesh and Vietnam have demonstrated that increasing trade through schemes like the UK’s DCTS helped them grow their economy, improve living standards, and drive down poverty”.

Similar schemes had studied in Canada, the United States, Japan and the EU when drawing up its new programme. The consultation on the UK’s new scheme runs for eight weeks and seeks the view of all sectors of society, including businesses, the public, civil society groups, consumers, associations, partner governments and any other interested stakeholders.

Lao-based businesses that sell goods to the UK are strongly encouraged to take this consultation (questionnaire) by link provided below. The views collected through this consultation will support the UK in setting out preferential market access for Laos.