International trade

This page highlights some of the current parliamentary material available on international trade. This includes select committee reports, briefing papers on current legislation and other subjects produced by the parliamentary research services, and the latest Early Day Motions put down by MPs.

Standard Notes

Trade: Trade statistics on the current account for the UK .
03.11.2014UK relations with Iran - 2014
How is the thaw in relations between Iran and the UK going?
15.10.2014In brief: UK-EU economic relations - key statistics
This note sets out, in brief, some of the main indicators of the UK's economic relationship with the EU.
03.10.2014The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)
A short briefing on the background, negotiation process and sticking points of the proposed EU-US free trade agreement, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.
24.04.2014UK Arms Export Control Policy
This note provides an overview of the development of the UK's legal and regulatory framework for arms exports since 1997. Controversy about UK arms exports to countries involved in the Arab Spring has led to changes in how the control regime operates in relation to exports that might be used for internal repression. UK ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty in April 2014 has required amendment of secondary legislation and an updating of the Consolidated Criteria, on which official decisions about whether to approve or refuse an export licence are based.

Research Papers

10.07.2014Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill
The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill will receive its Second Reading in the House of Commons on 16 July 2014.
01.07.2013Leaving the EU
The Treaty on European Union provides for a Member State to leave the EU, either on the basis of a negotiated withdrawal agreement or without one. If the UK were to leave the EU following a referendum, it is likely that the Government would negotiate an agreement with the EU, which would probably contain transitional arrangements as well as provide for the UK's long-term future relations with the EU. There is no precedent for such an agreement, but it would in all likelihood come at the end of complex and lengthy negotiations.
01.11.2012European Union (Croatian Accession and Irish Protocol) Bill [Bill 76 of 2012-13]
Croatia is expected to join the EU in July 2013. This Bill would allow the UK to ratify Croatia's accession treaty and would also cover the Protocol to the Lisbon Treaty put forward by the Irish Government.
12.03.2009Industry and Exports (Financial Support) Bill
This Bill would amend section 8(5) of the Industrial Development Act 1982 and section 1(1) of the Export and Investment Guarantees Act 1991. The Bill proposes to increase the total level of financial support to industry allowed under section 8 of the Industrial Development Act 1982. The Bill also proposes to widen support provided by the Export Credits Guarantee Department (ECGD) to include exports that have already taken place.
02.05.2007An economic introduction to India
An economic introduction to India. House of Commons Library Research Paper 07/40.

Select Committee Reports

15.12.2011Government response to the ninth report from the Foreign Affairs Select Committee on UK-Brazil relations....
Government response. Foreign and Commonwealth Office; Foreign Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
11.10.2011UK-Brazil relations.
Foreign Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
19.07.2011Trade and investment: China.
Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee report [Commons]
29.03.2011Re-launching the single market.
European Union Select Committee (HL) report [Lords]
23.03.2010Exporting out of recession.
Government response. Business Innovation and Skills Select Committee report [Commons]

Early Day Motions

That this House notes that the EU and India aim to conclude a free trade agreement at their summit in Delhi in February, but that numerous expert non-governmental organisations have ...
That this House notes that Japan is one of the world's largest importers of tropical timber and that in 2008 Chatham House estimated the value of illegally-sourced wood products imported ...
That this House congratulatesEthical Consumer for its work exposing the poor ethical record of the companies being awarded contracts to run our public services; is deeply concerned ...
That this House supports the signing of an Economic Co-operation Agreement between the EU and Taiwan; notes the rapprochement between the two governments across the Taiwan Strait, which ...
That this House recognises that export is key to sustainable economic recovery in the UK; welcomes the findings of the DHL/BCC Trade Confidence Index Q2 2011 showing that, whilst UK ...

Lords Library Notes

07.06.2013Debate on 13 June: Government's Priorities at the G8
This Library Note provides background information about the Prime Minister's stated priorities for the G8 meeting to be held in Northern Ireland on 17-18 June: advancing trade, improving tax compliance and promoting greater transparency.
29.06.2012Debate on 5 July: The International Competitiveness of UK Industry, Exporting to Global Markets and Attracting Inward Investment
This Library Note provides background reading for the debate on 5 July on the international competitiveness of UK industry, exports and attracting inward investment.

POST Papers

08.08.2014Alternative Currencies
This POSTnote outlines the different types and aims of these currencies. It also sets out how alternative currencies are being used and highlights regulatory and policy challenges regarding consumer protection, financial crime and taxation and benefits.


  • Research Papers (RP) - briefings produced by the House of Commons Library on Bills, topical issues and regular statistics
  • Standard Notes (SN) - shorter, topical briefings from the Commons Library
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POST Notes - short briefing notes produced by the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - papers compiled by the House of Lords Library on Bills and for debates in the Lords
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses