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MP asks government to give confidence to local sheep farmers; gets woolly answer

November 6, 2017 3:25 PM

Local MP Tim Farron has pressed the government to give local hill farmers confidence and encouragement as Brexit talks continue to stall.

Speaking in the House of Commons, the South Lakes MP asked what reassurances were there for local hill farmers who currently export 90% of their sheep products to EU countries.

But the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, Steve Baker, was unable to address the question and simply stated that the government "wishes to have a deep and special partnership with the European Union".

If the UK were to leave the EU without a deal then it would fall back on WTO rules which currently impose a 52% tariff on sheep products.

Tim said: "The Minister's attempt to re-assure local farmers was frankly pitiful.

"Sheep farming is so integral to the economy and the landscape of Cumbria, and yet the Government still continues to threaten to walk away without a deal with the EU, which would be devastating for local hill farmers."