Major parties in the European Parliament have indicated that until sanctions against their MEPs are lifted they will not ratify the European Union comprehensive agreement on investment with China. Will the UK do the same?

Apr 13, 2021 | Featured parliamentary activity

Major parties in the European Parliament have indicated that until sanctions against their MEPs are lifted they will not ratify the European Union comprehensive agreement on investment with China. Will the UK do the same?

Parliament – April 13th 2021

Lord Alton of Liverpool (CB) [V]

My Lords, I join the noble Baroness, Lady Kennedy, in thanking the Minister for his support following the imposition of sanctions. I declare that I serve as vice-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Hong Kong and as a patron of Hong Kong Watch. Has the Minister noted that, following the Chinese Communist Party’s sanctions on European Union parliamentarians, major parties in the European Parliament have indicated that until sanctions against their MEPs are lifted they will not ratify the European Union comprehensive agreement on investment with China? While sanctions attempting to curtail free speech are imposed on UK parliamentarians, are the Government willing to make a commitment today to take similar action and see how concerted measures can be taken to ensure that parliamentary free speech is not impeded?Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Con)

My Lords, I note what the noble Lord has said. Again, I pay tribute to his work in standing up for the rights of people in both China and Hong Kong. We will continue to observe and work with our partners to see what further steps we can take. I cannot answer the specific point he raised on trade, and nor would he expect me to at this juncture, but, in terms of our relationship, we are keeping all things actively under review.

Lord David Alton

For 18 years David Alton was a Member of the House of Commons and today he is an Independent Crossbench Life Peer in the UK House of Lords.

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