International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan has appointed Professor Lorand Bartels as the new chair of the Trade and Agriculture Commission (TAC).

Bartels, a Professor of International Law, takes over the position from Tim Smith.

Bartels is a general editor of the Cambridge International Trade and Economic Law Series (CUP), an associate editor of the Journal of World Trade and an editorial board member of several journals, including the Journal of International Economic Law and Legal Issues of Economic Integration.

Commenting on her appointment, Trevelyan said:

I’m delighted to welcome Professor Lorand Bartels as chair of the new Trade and Agriculture Commission. A trade lawyer and academic, he brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the role and I look forward to working together.

“I’m grateful to all the members of the original Trade and Agriculture Commission for their thorough and wide-reaching report. I want our farmers and food producers to be positive about the export opportunities that exist and take advantage of booming demand for British exports."

As chair, Bartels will lead the TAC in providing scrutiny of new trade deals once they reach the signature stage, helping ensure that British agricultural standards are upheld.

The Professor said he is looking forward to both the position and his new colleagues.

"I am looking forward to getting started in the role and working with my new colleagues, who bring a wide range of expertise from different fields that will be of great benefit to the commission,” he said.

"The commission has an important role to play in the scrutiny of new Free Trade Agreements and it's exciting to be involved as the UK forges new trading relationships all around the world."

The Trade and Agriculture Commission

TAC was established in July 2020 with the purpose of advising government on trade policies that will secure opportunities for UK farmers, while also ensuring the sector remains competitive and that animal welfare and environmental standards in food production are not undermined.

Its members include individuals across the agriculture, retail, consumer, hospitality, animal health and environment sectors.

The full member list of the new commission is as follows:

  • Robert Anderson ;
  • Prof. Lorand Bartels (chair); 
  • Gracia Marin Duran; 
  • Catherine McBride; 
  • Jim Moseley; 
  • Cedric Porter; 
  • Meurig Raymond; 
  • Kate Rowell; 
  • Shanker Singham; 
  • Sir Lockwood Smith; 
  • Andrew Swift; 
  • Nick Von Westenholz.

The previous commission’s report from its duty during a fixed term was published on March 2, 2021, and was presented to Parliament by the Department for International Trade.

Among the commission’s 22 recommendations was an advisory for government to further strengthen assessment of trade policies and agreements.

“Assessment of trade deals with developing countries should assess growth and development of the partner country, as well as the UK,” the report said.