The British government will use an “obscure” rule to deny lawmakers a vote aimed at blocking imports of chlorinated chicken and hormone-fed beef, The Independent newspaper reported late on Saturday.
he move will see the ministers defeat an attempt to give powers to a new watchdog, amid suspicions that Britain’s post-Brexit trade deals, particularly with the United States, will water down food and animal welfare standards, the report added.
The step will prevent debate on a key amendment expected to be backed by lawmakers, the newspaper reported.
Ministers will argue that giving increased powers to the new, temporary Trade and Agriculture Commission will impose an extra cost, The Independent reported.
It comes as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Sunday that progress must be made in post-Brexit trade talks with the European Union in coming days to bridge “significant gaps”, his office said.
Johnson, who spoke to Merkel earlier on Sunday, repeated his belief that “while achieving a deal in the coming days would be beneficial for both sides, the UK was also prepared to end the transition period on Australia-style terms”.
“The prime minister emphasised that progress must be made in the coming days to bridge the significant gaps, in particular in the areas of fisheries and the level playing field, through the process of intensive talks between chief negotiators,” his office said in a statement.
Australia does not have a trade deal with the EU.