Australia and others ask for Brexit trade compensation

(BBC) – Countries including Australia have asked for trade compensation from the UK and the EU over Brexit disruption.

Fifteen countries, including the US, India and New Zealand, have been setting out Brexit concerns at a World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Geneva.

Australian officials said their beef and lamb exporters had already been hit after several Brexit delays.

Brazil said Brexit plans for Northern Ireland could breach WTO rules.

The main issue for the fifteen countries is a system which allows them easier access to the EU’s large market for limited quantities of some of their goods, mainly farm produce.

It’s a system known as “tariff rate quotas”.

World Trade Organization members generally apply tariffs – taxes on imports – to many of the goods they buy from abroad.

For some products they have made commitments to allow specified amounts to be imported with tariffs that are lower than what they usually apply. In some cases the reduced tariff is zero.

It makes it more profitable for Australian farmers to sell beef to Europe, for example.