Y Pwyllgor Materion Allanol a Deddfwriaeth Ychwanegol
External Affairs and Additional Legislation Committee24/09/2020
Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol
Committee Members in Attendance
|Alun Davies MS|
|Dai Lloyd MS|
|David Rees MS||Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor|
|Jack Sargeant MS||Yn dirprwyo ar ran Huw Irranca-Davies|
|Substitute for Huw Irranca-Davies|
|Laura Anne Jones MS|
|Mandy Jones MS|
Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol
Others in Attendance
|Eluned Morgan MS||Gweinidog y Gymraeg a Chysylltiadau Rhyngwladol|
|Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language|
|Emma Edworthy||Llywodraeth Cymru|
Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol
Senedd Officials in Attendance
|Aled Evans||Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol|
|Claire Fiddes||Dirprwy Glerc|
|Rhys Morgan||Ail Glerc|
Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.
The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.
Cyfarfu'r pwyllgor drwy gynhadledd fideo.
Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 14:00.
The committee met by video-conference.
The meeting began at 14:00.
Good afternoon and can I welcome members of the public and members of the committee to this afternoon's meeting of the External Affairs and Additional Legislation Committee? Once again, we're operating the committee in virtual mode, and therefore can I remind everyone that, in accordance with Standing Order 34.19, I determine that the public are excluded from the committee's meeting in order to protect public health? But they are able to view the broadcast on www.senedd.tv, and because we operate bilingually, they are able to view the English version or the Welsh version. So, both are available on that website.
We've received apologies from Huw Irranca-Davies this afternoon, and can I welcome Jack Sargeant as substitute to the meeting? Welcome.
We are in a situation where, obviously because we're virtual, we have agreed in the past that if my signal drops out and I lose my signal and therefore am not able to be involved with the committee at that point in time, Alun Davies will act as temporary Chair until either the point when I'm able to get back into the meeting or until the completion of the meeting.
Does any Member at this point wish to declare an interest on any issues that we will be discussing today? I see none.
And, finally, can I welcome Laura Anne Jones to her first meeting? Unfortunately, last week, she had technical problems and wasn't able to join us, but we welcome you, Laura, and look forward to your contributions to our committee in the remaining time in the Senedd. Welcome.
We'll go straight into item 2 on the agenda in that case, which is a scrutiny session with the Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language. Can I welcome the Minister, Eluned Morgan, to the meeting? And with her today is Emma Edworthy, deputy director of trade policy for Welsh Government. Both, welcome.
Minister, as you know, there are some concerns we have over the continuation of trade policy and international relations with Wales. We'll just go straight to questions, if it's okay with you, and the first questions are from Laura.
Thank you, Chair. Minister, you've said yourself that the UK Government is acting in quite a positive way towards you in terms of trade negotiations, and you said that they're acting already as though there are concordats in place and, therefore, there are already discussions at a ministerial level happening regularly. In terms of the trade Bill, they've pledged that there will be despatch box commitments that will, more or less, set out what we expect to see in the concordat. I'm just wondering how you're progressing with that, in terms of the inter-governmental concordat on trade—how's it going?
I think it's worth emphasising again the contrast between the engagement we've managed to get with the Department for International Trade and that that's afforded to the Brexit negotiations, which is basically that we've pretty much been locked out of those. And the fact is that the relationship between us and the Minister, Greg Hands, who's responsible for trade, is a really, really positive one. There's very constructive engagement with our officials.
And just to give you an example of how we're actually influencing things—because just because you talk to someone, if it doesn't make any difference, it's not a big deal—just this week, we have had a commitment from the Minister that they will now amend the legislation, as it's going through the House of Lords, so that the Welsh Ministers and devolved legislation will be recognised as a separate body to access HM Revenue and Customs data. So, that wouldn't have happened had we not had a very constructive engagement.
So, things are actually changing as a result of the engagement. Unfortunately, we're still in the situation where the concordat hasn't been signed, and that is something that we press on at every single meeting—it's something that I bring up. This is a collective agreement that has to be made by the UK Government—so, they have to determine that across departments, and they're clearly not in a situation where they're willing to do that yet. But in practice, we're working as if the concordat was in place.
Can I carry on?
Thank you, Minister, for that. It's encouraging that the UK Government are being so inclusive and listening to us here in Wales, and you particularly.
I'm just wondering, do you welcome, then, the fact that the department for trade has removed now 175 barriers to trade across 61 countries worldwide, opening up new global markets for Welsh and British exporters? The UK has exchanged its first market access offers with both the US and Australia now. Was the Welsh Government consulted on the content of that? You say that your relationship is close. How were you involved in that process? How much were you consulted? Would you have wanted to have more input than you have had?
I think that we have got to qualify, in terms of how engaged we are and to what extent we are consulted. Obviously, market access relates to tariffs and tariff rate quotas, which are not devolved. So, obviously, we are not given access to the documents on something like that in the same way as we would be for something that is wholly devolved. So, that's a slightly different situation. Having said that, to be fair, they recognised that it will have an impact on us. They know, for example, that tariff rate quotas could have an influence on the way that that we may want to manage and organise our future funding regime for Welsh farmers. So, they recognise that there's a relationship. So, our access in areas that are not devolved is not as great, and we are not as able to influence in quite the same way. But, they talk it through with officials rather than present us with documents, which they do in relation to the devolved areas.
Right, okay. So, you're almost given a heads-up of what's going on, and they keep you close during those times. That's encouraging.
Just to say that the US market access—[Inaudible.]—have now been tabled, but I don't think the ones for Australia have yet. So, those haven't been tabled as yet. So, that will make a big difference to us, and is also obviously critical in terms of our agricultural sector.
Yes. Something that will benefit our agricultural sector, for sure, is the UK-Japan free trade agreement, which was agreed in principle on 11 September, obviously opening massive doors for us—them being one of the biggest importers of food and drink. Particularly, I'm thinking it would be beneficial for our beef and lamb export industry. What action are you taking to make sure that the Welsh Government makes the most of this opportunity?
I don't think that we should exaggerate this trade deal. What we are doing is we're not stepping back from the agreement and the trade conditions that we had with the EU. It's about what we might have lost had we not had a trade agreement in place by the end of the year, which is completely different from every other trade deal. All of the others are continuity agreements. This is what they are flagging up as being the great first free trade agreement. Actually, it's more or less replicating what our agreement was with the EU before—about 80 per cent.
There have been areas where we've succeeded and we've got a lot more. So, for example, we're really proud of the fact that there are 15 Welsh geographical indications that were agreed, compared to none under the EU agreement. So, there have been some steps forward, and I think that that's really positive. Welsh lamb, as you suggest, and beef are within those geographical indications now, so hopefully we will be able to move on that. Already, our office in Japan is doing what it can to really try and promote these opportunities now with this new arrangement. Don't forget, it's still kind of in draft form. It has to be ratified, but I think that everyone is fairly confident now that it will be ratified by the end of the year.
Okay. Just a last question, Minister, from me on this section. The Australian one, which you mentioned, obviously, would make us their seventh largest trade partner. Would you be looking to open an office there if things progress, to promote our industries there, or goods?
Well, I think that we've got to be realistic about how much we have in terms of resources and where our trade strength is. The fact is that it's not very strong with Australia, I'm afraid, at the moment. Would there be any additional opportunities if there were a free trade agreement? Well, if you look at the economic analysis and the impact assessments that have been looked at, it's 0.01 per cent or something. The impact is absolutely tiny.
What we've got to do with these trade agreements is protect our industries. This is about not damaging, rather than real opportunities to develop a relationship with something on the other side of the world, when we're cutting off our relationship with our nearest neighbours, where 50 per cent of our trade in goods goes. It's just completely unrealistic about flagging up that this is a great opportunity for us when we're cutting off our opportunities just the other side of the channel.
Then new opportunities present themselves. Okay, thank you.
Thank you. Alun, did you want to come back with a supplementary on one point?
Yes. I'm grateful to you for that, Chair, and I'm grateful to the Minister for being very realistic in answering those questions. The numbers that I've seen from the United Kingdom Government demonstrate that, over the next 15 years, in terms of trade with New Zealand, we could potentially see an increase of 0 per cent to 0.05 per cent in our gross value added; with Australia, from 0 per cent to 0.05 per cent; and with Japan, from 0.05 per cent to 0.15 per cent. Even with the United States, the best that they could analyse—and these are UK figures—is 0.40 per cent, and that's about the best possible case. So, it appears to me that these trade deals are more about public relations than substance and that we're not seeing any great opening up of trade in any realistic way at all, particularly when you look at the potential for loss, which, I think, the UK's own numbers demonstrate, again, is far, far greater. So, I was wondering, Minister, what your approach is going to be on this. We've seen the UK numbers themselves. I presume that those are numbers you recognise and that you will concur with. So, where do you think this leaves us? I've seen a lot in the papers about Japan, but I've seen nothing that gives me any realistic sense that this is about substance more than PR.
Yes, this is about not—. With Japan, it's specifically about not losing the relationship we have. We've got a lot of Japanese companies in Wales and we've got a lot of automotive parts that where there is a need for a relationship with Japan. What we won't do is to lose that relationship, and I guess there was a danger that that could have happened, but let's not pretend this is going to be huge gains for us here. In every single meeting that we have with the Minister, we make it absolutely clear that the priority has got to be the EU agreement, and that that's where our trade gravity is, it's where our relationship is, and why we would want to cut off that relationship, in the middle of a pandemic, is beyond us.
Thank you, Minister. Before I move on to Dai Lloyd, in answer to Laura Jones, you indicated that there were things that were reserved, that market access was reserved, and that UK Government officials talk it through, or talk our officials through. That, to me, says they're just telling us what they want and not that we are actually having an opportunity to say. Is it the situation where they're just telling us what they're saying and we have no opportunity to actually change their mind on that because we haven't had an input at that point in time? When do we actually have an input into these points?
We have an input. In terms of our negotiations, we have had an input all along, so they've been really positive, in that sense. I guess they are trying to distinguish between where we have a right to have, or what they would consider a right to see documents and things, and those areas that are strictly reserved, where, perhaps, they would consider we would have less of a right. We would argue that reserved areas also impact on us. So, if you think about something like tariffs, such as the tariffs on automotive, on cars, that's going to affect us, but, because it's a reserved area, they say, 'Well, we don't quite have to consult you in quite the same way.' But we do impress on them, and, because we've developed a good relationship with them now, they do actually listen to us and we can give them real-life examples, in particular using our experts from Wales, of how things could affect us.
That's critical, because, as you quite rightly pointed out, in the areas for which you have responsibility, which those other decisions would impact upon, how can you make policy decisions if you don't know what those impacts could be? So, there we go. Dai.
Diolch yn fawr, Cadeirydd. Yn dilyn hynna, rydych chi wedi sôn am y berthynas well sydd gyda chi efo Greg Hands, y Gweinidog, ac yn dilyn ar hynna a chwestiwn Alun Davies yn benodol, ac hefyd David Ress, allwch chi amlinellu'n fanwl pa rôl benodol oedd gennych chi fel Llywodraeth Cymru o ran paratoi ar gyfer y cytundeb yma rhwng y Deyrnas Unedig a Siapan yn nhermau y broses negodi? Hynny yw, pa fewnbwn oedd gyda chi ac oedd lefel yr ymgysylltu a ddarparwyd i Lywodraeth Cymru gan Lywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig, yn eich barn chi, yn ddigonol? Pa ran oedd gyda chi yn benodol yn y broses, hynny yw, ac oeddech chi yn gallu dylanwadu ar bethau?
Thank you very much, Chair. Following on from that, you've mentioned the better relationship that you have with the Minister, Greg Hands, but following on from that and Alun Davies and David Rees's questions specifically, could you outline in detail what specific role the Welsh Government had in preparing for and negotiating the UK-Japan agreement in terms of the negotiation process? What input did you have and was the level of engagement provided to the Welsh Government by the UK Government in your view sufficient? So, what specific role did you have in the process and could you influence proceedings?
Reit o'r dechrau ym mis Chwefror, roedd cyfle gyda ni i edrych ar y mandad oedd gyda'r Deyrnas Unedig. Felly, roedd cyfle gyda ni wedyn i ymateb yn gynnar iawn. Mae negodiadau wedi bod yn digwydd rhyngom ni a'r swyddogion yn Llundain trwy gydol yr amser negodi yna. Maen nhw yn ein cadw ni yn y lŵp, maen nhw'n cadw mewn cysylltiad gyda ni. Mae hyd yn oed y bobl sydd ar y blaen o ran y negodi, maen nhw wedi ymgysylltu â'n swyddogion ni yn aml. Ac ar ddiwedd y broses, pan oedd e'n edrych fel bod cytundeb wedi cael ei fwrw, mi ges i alwad gan y Gweinidog i ddweud wrthyf fi yn union beth oedd yn y trafodaethau a oedd wedi cael eu cyflawni. Felly, dwi'n meddwl bod y broses, y ffaith ein bod ni yn gallu dylanwadu'n gynnar iawn yn y broses—mae hwnna i ni yn fwy pwysig nag unrhyw beth arall, achos er ein bod ni wedi dweud y bydden ni'n licio cael sedd wrth y bwrdd, y ffaith yw os ŷch wrth y bwrdd, mae'n rhaid ichi gymryd safbwynt y Deyrnas Unedig. Beth sy'n fwy pwysig yw eich bod chi'n dylanwadu ar beth sy'n cael ei ddweud wrth y bwrdd, a dyna pam rŷn ni wedi canolbwyntio ar hynny tan nawr.
From the very outset in February, we had an opportunity to look at the mandate that the UK had. So, yes, there was an opportunity for us to respond at a very early stage. Negotiations have been ongoing between ourselves and officials in London throughout that negotiation period. They are keeping us in the loop, they are keeping in touch with us. Even those who are at the forefront in terms of the negotiations, they have been engaging with our officials on a regular basis. At the end of the process, when it did appear that a deal had been done, I took a call from the Minister, who informed me exactly what had been delivered through negotiations. So, I do think the process and the fact that we could have an influence at a very early stage—that to us is more important than anything else, because although we have said that we want a seat at the table, the fact is that if you do have that seat at the table, you do have to take the UK position. What's more important is that you influence what is said at the table, and that's why we've focused on that.
Diolch yn fawr am hynna, Gweinidog. Allwch chi bellach gadarnhau a ydych chi wedi gweld copi o gytundeb drafft y Deyrnas Unedig â Siapan ac a wahoddwyd cyfreithwyr Llywodraeth Cymru i gyfrannu fel rhan o'r broses sgwrio gyfreithiol?
Thank you very much for that. Could you further confirm whether you've seen a copy of the draft UK-Japan agreement and whether Welsh Government lawyers have been invited to contribute as part of the legal scrubbing process?
Dwi ddim wedi gweld copi llawn eto, ond mae swyddogion wedi cael cyfle i edrych ar y 10 pennod cyntaf sydd wedi cael eu sgrwbio yn ddeddfwriaethol—roedd hwnna'n air newydd i fi. Ond o ran os ydy ein cyfreithwyr ni wedi cael cyfle i weld, dŷn nhw ddim wedi, ond dŷn ni ddim yn poeni am hynny, achos eu bod nhw wedi bod yn rhan o'r negodi. Maen nhw wedi cael cyfle i weld y tecst trwy'r broses a dŷn ni ddim yn disgwyl i bethau fod wedi newid lot ers i ni weld y tecst sydd yn benodol yn mynd i effeithio arnom ni o ran Cymru.
I've not seen a full copy as of yet, but the first 10 chapters have been viewed by officials and have been scrubbed in legislative terms—that was a new term for me, I have to say. But as to whether our lawyers have had an opportunity to see, they haven't, as of yet, but we're not concerned about that, because they have been part of the negotiation. They've had an opportunity to see the text throughout the process, and we don't expect there to have been too many changes since we viewed the text that will specifically impact upon Wales.
Diolch am hynna. Allwch chi gadarnhau pryd rydych chi'n disgwyl i'r Senedd allu gweld testun cytundeb y Deyrnas Unedig â Siapan ac ydych chi'n credu y dylid darparu copi terfynol o'r testun i'r pwyllgor hwn yn gyfrinachol cyn iddo gael ei gyhoeddi, fel fydd yn wir am y Pwyllgor Masnach Rhyngwladol yn Nhŷ'r Cyffredin? Maen nhw'n cael copi cyfrinachol, beth am y pwyllgor yma?
Thank you for that. Can you confirm when you expect the Senedd to be able to see the text of the UK-Japan agreement and whether you believe that a final copy of this text should be provided to this committee confidentially before it is published, as will be the case for the International Trade Committee in the House of Commons? They will receive a confidential copy, what about this committee?
Wel, mae hwnna yn bwynt, wrth gwrs, i'r Llywodraeth benderfynu. Eu cytundeb nhw yw e, ac felly mae e i fyny iddyn nhw i benderfynu i bwy maen nhw'n ei ddangos e. Yn sicr, dwi yn meddwl y dylen nhw fod yn dangos yn bendant y rhannau hynny sydd yn effeithio ar ddatganoli. Dwi wedi trafod hyn gyda Greg Hands, y Gweinidog, wedi gofyn iddo fe i ystyried sut gall eich pwyllgor chi, er enghraifft, sicrhau eich bod chi'n cael syniad o beth sy'n mynd ymlaen, ac roedd e'n dda i weld ddoe bod Greg Hands wedi siarad gyda'r pwyllgor yn yr Alban ac wedi ymrwymo yn fanna y byddai fe'n edrych i mewn i hyn yn y dyfodol. Ond byddai fe werth ichi hefyd ofyn i'r pwyllgor yn San Steffan i weld sut mae'r cysylltiad yna'n gallu datblygu.
Well, that is a matter for the Government to decide. It's their agreement, and it's up to them to decide who should receive copies. I certainly believe that they should be sharing those sections that have an impact on devolution. I have discussed this with the Minister, Greg Hands, and I have asked him to consider how your committee, for example, can be briefed on what is going on, and it was good to see yesterday that Greg Hands spoke to the committee in Scotland and committed there that he would look into this issue in future. But it would be worthwhile for you to ask the Westminster committee to see how that relationship could be developed.
Diolch am hynna. Wrth gwrs, craffu—dyna beth rydyn ni'n ei wneud, yndê, ac wedyn mae'n hwyluso'r broses graffu. Mae'r cwestiwn olaf gen i am ehangu'ch gorwelion—wel, rydyn ni wedi ehangu ein gorwelion yn y cwestiynau yma i Siapan, ond rydyn ni'n mynd i'w hehangu nhw i Seland Newydd ac Awstralia. Rydych chi wedi cyffwrdd ag Awstralia, sydd hefyd, fel rydych chi wedi crybwyll eisoes, yn bell i ffwrdd. Allech chi gadarnhau pa sylwadau mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi'u cyflwyno i Lywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig ynglŷn â'r negodiadau ar gyfer y cytundeb rhwng y Deyrnas Unedig a Seland Newydd yn y lle cyntaf, ac hefyd y cytundeb rhwng y Deyrnas Unedig ac Awstralia, o ystyried effaith negyddol—buasai rhai ohonon ni yn ei weld—posibl y ddau gytundeb, yn benodol ar y sector amaethyddiaeth a'r sector bwyd wedi'i led-brosesu yma yng Nghymru, fel sy'n cael ei amlinellu nid jest trwy rhagfarn bersonol, ond mewn asesiadau effaith o'r ddau gytundeb?
Thank you for that. Scrutiny is what we do, of course, and we need to facilitate that scrutiny process. The final question from me is about broadening horizons. We've broadened our horizons towards Japan already, and we're now going to look to New Zealand and Australia. You've touched upon Australia already, which, as you've mentioned, is a long way off. Can you confirm what representation the Welsh Government has made to the UK Government with regard to the negotiations for the UK-New Zealand and UK-Australia agreements, given the potential negative impact, as some of us would see it, in terms of both agreements, particularly on agriculture and the semi-processed food sectors here in Wales? This isn't a personal prejudice—this potential is outlined in impact assessments on both agreements.
Diolch, Dai. Yn sicr, rŷn ni wedi ei gwneud hi yn glir i'r Llywodraeth yn San Steffan ein bod ni yn poeni yn arw os byddai access i'r farchnad amaethyddol yn dod yn rhy gyflym, wedyn mi allai fe gael effaith andwyol ar ein sector amaethyddol ni. Felly, rŷn ni wedi bod yn glir ein bod ni ddim eisiau gweld unrhyw fath o liberalisation yn digwydd yn fuan, a dŷn ni ddim eisiau gweld lleihad yn y safonau sydd gyda ni, ac wrth gwrs dŷn ni ddim eisiau gweld unrhyw beth sy'n mynd i effeithio arnom ni yn negyddol o ran iechyd anifeiliaid a hawliau anifeiliaid ac ati. Felly, rŷn ni wedi pwysleisio'r pwyntiau hynny nid yn unig gyda Llywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig, ond hefyd dwi wedi cael cyfle i drafod yn uniongyrchol gyda llysgennad Awstralia ac hefyd y llysgenhadaeth yn Seland Newydd. Felly, rŷn ni yn trafod ar y ddwy ochr, ac mae'n rili ddiddorol, i sicrhau—mae'n gyfle arall i ni, rili, i drafod gyda'r ochr arall. Y bore yma, fel dŷch chi'n ymwybodol, roedd David Rees wedi cwrdd â llysgennad yr Undeb Ewropeaidd, a finnau hefyd, ac un o'r pwyntiau roeddwn i'n eu gwneud iddo fe oedd i wneud yn siŵr eu bod nhw'n deall, yr Undeb Ewropeaidd yn deall, mai ni fydd yn gorfod sicrhau bod pethau yn cael eu gwneud, ni sy'n gwneud yr implementation. Gyda phob un dwi'n cwrdd â nhw, dwi'n tanlinellu bod yn rhaid iddyn nhw gael dealltwriaeth os mae'r Deyrnas Unedig yn arwyddo rhywbeth, mae'n rhaid iddyn nhw fod yn hollol ffyddiog ein bod ni yn mynd i ddilyn trwy, neu dyw e ddim yn werth y papur sydd wedi'i gytuno.
Thank you, Dai. Yes, we have made it clear to the Government in Westminster that we are gravely concerned that if access to the agricultural market were to be provided too swiftly, it could have a very detrimental impact on our agricultural sector. So, we have been clear that we don't want to see any kind of liberalisation happening at an early stage, we don't want to see a reduction in the standards that we currently have, and we don't want to see anything having a negative impact on us in terms of animal health and welfare and so on. So, we have emphasised those points not only with the UK Government, but I have also had an opportunity to have direct discussions with the Australian ambassador and the embassy in New Zealand. So, we are having discussions on both sides, and it's interesting, and it's another opportunity for us, if truth be told, to have discussions with the other side, if you like. This morning, you'll be aware that David Rees met the European Union ambassador, and one of the points that I made during my meeting with him was to understand that they, the European Union, understand that it's us that will have to ensure that things are done properly. We are responsible for the implementation. With everyone I meet, I do highlight the fact that they need to have an understanding that if the UK signs up to something, they have to be entirely confident that we are going to follow through, or it's not worth the paper it's written on.
Diolch yn fawr.
Thank you, Dai. We'll move on now to some questions on the continuity negotiations, because clearly there was always a question of the rollover of some of the agreements the EU had with other nations, and where we were with that. Jack.
Diolch yn fawr, Chair, and prynhawn da, Minister, and Emma, too. Firstly, if I may ask for the Minister's response to the Permanent Secretary of the UK Department for International Trade's comments that were made on 14 September, which seemed to suggest that the trade continuity agreements are yet to be signed, and are actually being deprioritised.
Thanks, Jack. I must say, I don't necessarily recognise that as something that is true. That's certainly not something they've said to us. In fact, they've said the opposite—they've said they're very keen to get the ball over the line, if they can, by the end of the year. I think there are some 20 agreements that have been signed, and there were about 48 in total, so there are about 18 left to sign. Some of them are much more significant and important to us than others. So, one of the ones we're really keen to see is Canada, and you'll have an interest in this, Jack, because there's a great relationship between Wales aerospace and aerospace in Canada. They're a real centre of excellence, and there's a real interest in seeing how we can develop that relationship. But that's one where we would really like to see an agreement. The other one is Turkey—much more difficult, because the relationship is part of the customs union—and then of course there are the EFTA agreements, which are much more difficult in that space. So, my understanding is that they want to get as many of these over the line as possible. A lot of them, to be honest, whether they sign them or not won't make a big difference to Wales, because we haven't got a lot of trade with, I don't know, Ghana, for example, or Bosnia-Herzegovina. So there are some we're more interested in than others.
Thanks for that, Minister. We will come to EFTA agreements shortly. I was very pleased that you mentioned the aerospace industry in your response there, because it is absolutely vital, and in these negotiations we must push for a heavy stance on aerospace. It’s absolutely vital for Wales, and certainly for my constituency, as you know. So if you could keep that message going when you do go to negotiation meetings, that would be very pleasing from my side of things. Minister, would you be able to outline the progress that has been made in relation to the negotiation of separation agreements between the United Kingdom, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway?
The timetable for the Norway agreement is really, really tight now. So, in order to get an agreement that will kick in by the end of the year, because of the process in Norway, they have to get an agreement by 9 October. So there’s some really intensive work being done at the moment on that. This is something, actually, I discussed with the EU ambassador this morning, just asking them how that Norwegian relationship and the EEA-EFTA relationships will work. So, what we’re talking about here is basically some sticking plaster, in terms of agreements, to see us through, and then of course they’d have to see what the relationship between the UK and the EU is before reconsidering them again. So, this is about sticking plasters so that we don’t see any massive barriers to trade in the interim. But we’ll have to see what happens with the EU deal. They’re so interlinked, anything to do with EFTA and the EEA.
Thanks, Minister; I’m coming on to the EEA and EFTA now. Have you sought any assurances as to what agreements would be in place between the UK and the EEA-EFTA countries if the UK and the EU were unable to reach an agreement on the future trade deal?
My understanding is that there are mitigations that have been put in place if there’s not a deal by 9 October. Don’t forget there was something that was ready to go had we had a 'no deal' Brexit earlier. There was an agreement ready, so I guess the plan is to just revive that. But there’s a limit, at this point in time, because we’re in the middle of the negotiation, in terms of how much we’re able to discuss that at this point.
Okay. Thanks, Chair. Thanks, Minister.
Thank you, Jack. Minister, it’s interesting that you point that out, because the two, as you say—the EFTA countries are really interlinked with the EU and they already have those trading relationships, so it is going to be difficult really and truly to actually have a separate agreement with EFTA when we haven’t got an agreement with the EU, because how will the EU manage the trade between EFTA countries and themselves if there’s not an agreement? I’m imagining that, without one, the other one won’t happen in reality, no matter what we say, because of the complexities of EU trade with those nations.
Yes, I think you’re right, David. I think what we’ve got to remember is that there’s a real problem here in terms of that relationship. And just in terms of our discussions on this point, it’s not the department for trade and investment that’s leading on this; it’s more the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and it’s a much broader agreement because of the relationship with the EU. So it’s much more difficult for us to get access to information on those particular agreements, because they’re in a different department.
Okay. That’s interesting. Thank you. Out of curiosity, then, is it you who is taking the lead on that one, or is it Jeremy Miles?
It’s funny, actually; I had a discussion with Jeremy the other day. So, in principle it’s me who is leading it, but because of the close relationship with the EU, there’s a danger it falls between two stools. So I had a discussion with Jeremy just yesterday on that.
Okay. Thank you. Alun.
Thank you very much. It seems a bit chaotic, doesn’t it, and feels that we’re relying too much on goodwill and not enough on structures. My experience of dealing with UK or EU Governments is that relationships work better and results are better when you have clear and effective structures. What you said in answer to Laura at the beginning of this session and what you seem to be saying now is that a great deal of the relationships between ourselves and the United Kingdom Government rely on, basically, do you get on with one of the Ministers.
Absolutely, yes. I think, Alun, you're absolutely right, which is why we have been pushing the whole time; we've got to get this concordat in place, because who knows who comes next? And, of course, we've gone a lot further in terms of what we want and the negotiations on that and what we think is going to be in the concordat. We've gone a lot further than a lot of the other departments. It's all part of reconstituting the United Kingdom and making sure the infrastructure is in place and the architecture is there for us to work in this completely new context that we never had to work with before, because we had the umbrella of the EU doing it for us.
I'm sure that's the case. It does sound like the UK is actually collapsing rather than reconstituting, but we won't go down that route this afternoon. Could I ask your official, if you don't mind, Minister? We're quite used to politics being chaotic, but to what extent are relationships working and is the flow of information working between officials?
Yes, I'd say it's much, much better than on the EU side, Alun—much, much better—and, yes, it does flow really well. I think I've explained to the group before or the committee that we have a senior officials group, so that's where we sit down every six weeks and talk through all the meaty issues. And then, underneath that, our policy teams now have direct access to the negotiating teams in all of the various chapters, especially the ones in devolved competence, and that access involves being briefed after every round—US, Australia, New Zealand. The text flows, so the relevant text comes through, our lawyers see it, we comment, we go back, and what they do as well is they will document where our issues have been taken on board as well. So, we're trying to document everywhere where we've done that.
So, at an official level it is working really well. Like any big department, there'll be blockages, but the way DIT has structured itself, it has a DA engagement team. That team will go specifically to a chapter team if that chapter team is not engaging properly with us. At the moment, that is working as well as we could expect.
Okay. It's interesting to hear, I think, and I think that's something that the committee may wish to discuss at another time. But in terms of the structure of these—. Sorry, does Laura want to come in there?
I'll bring Laura in now after you've asked the question. Don't worry.
It's just on something he's just said. Would it be all right to say something now?
Yes, go ahead.
It was just that Alun seemed to be going very political, which is understandable, it's a very heated sort of thing that we're discussing, I suppose—
There's no politics in this committee.
Well, no, of course not. [Laughter.] I just wanted to point out that isn't this a whole new world out there now with new opportunities, and all of this is just a matter—it carries on from what the Minister's just been saying—is just a matter of bedding in and getting used to working with one another? It's a whole new thing for all of us on both sides of our border, surely, and I haven't heard one thing the Minister's said that's saying that the UK Government are anti, in any way, working with devolved Governments on this. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
I think the Minister has already answered the question to you earlier on, to be honest. The only question I would have asked her is that Alun pointed out the question of personalities with Ministers. I get the impression that officials seem to be working well together, which I think is also an important aspect.
But it does mean that the structures are in a seriously bad way, and you know, you can—
There's a question on structures, which we appreciate, and we will be pursuing that.
You can wish that away as much as you like, but I don't think that's humanly possible. But anyway, it is what it is.
In terms of the actual structure of the negotiations and taking this forward, there are two areas that I wanted to seek to explore with the Minister if I could. Back in July, I think it was Liz Truss who established an agriculture commission for six months—I don't know why she thought six months was a good time, but there we are, it was done—and that would provide a report to Ministers. I presume it will provide a report to you, Minister, and I presume it will provide a report to us as a Parliament as well. But, anyway, this beast has been created. Now, have you had any relationship with those conversations? Have you had any relationship with this commission? Have you had any meetings with the commission? Do you know how the commission is looking at its work? The output, from what we can see from the terms of reference, is a report. Now, there are reports written every day; I'm not sure what purpose that would have. But, from your perspective, leading the Welsh Government's response to trade negotiations, what impact is this agriculture commission actually having?
Just in terms of the structures and the relationships, official meetings have taken place three times since the commission began. That is with officials, and we expect that engagement to continue over the next few months. And we're getting regular updates from the secretariat of the Trade and Agriculture Commission on the progress that the commission's making. Now, it's probably worth just noting that both the National Farmers Union in Wales and the Farmers Union of Wales are represented on the commission, so we have regular contact as well through those bodies. But, at the end of the day, this is not our body; this is something that Liz Truss has made herself, and it's very interesting that she's kind of locked us out, in terms of we weren't allowed to nominate or anything, but it's also true for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. So, she's kind of locking—. She's created her own little advisory group, whereas you'd think that DEFRA would already have a bit of expertise in that space, so you can make of that what you like.
Yes, and I think we're all familiar with the back channels and conversations that take place, where we get our information from. It's always been entertaining, but it's never been satisfactory. What you seem to be saying is that the structures that are failing between the Welsh and Scottish Governments and the UK Government seem also to be failing within the UK Government as well, and that's quite an interesting observation; I'm grateful to you for that, Minister.
In terms of the other trade advisory groups, there seem to be a collection of these organisations that have direct input into policy, and direct input into the formation of UK Government policy and approach. What is your relationship with those advisory groups? Do you feed into them? Do they feed into you? To what extent do you meet and have these conversations with the trade advisory groups?
So far, there haven't been any agreements. So, I think we've got to be clear. On the whole, the relationship's really good, but there are pockets where it's not so good. This is an example where they're not really engaging with us. We don't really even know what the exact remit of the commission is. I've already written to Greg Hands to ask for some clarity on that. But, I just think it's worth just underlining that this is a UK body that has been set up to advise the UK Government. We've got our own body that advises us, and we don't invite them into our party either. But, I do think that this is an area where there's a slight lack of clarity in terms of how we can engage, and to what extent it's those advisory groups that are informing decisions rather than ones that we have set up ourselves, for example.
We're moving into an area that I think Mandy was going to raise questions on. So—
I must say I'm not sure I fully understood that answer.
I'll come back to you, Alun. I will come back to you, I promise. Mandy, I know this is an area you wanted to ask questions on.
Yes, thank you, Chair. Afternoon, Minister.
Can you confirm what engagement the Welsh Government have had with the UK Government's newly established trade advisory group, please, and could you also say if you're confident that they have sufficient knowledge of devolved issues?
So, this is another example where we don't think that they have really taken up the fact that, actually, we've got some experts in our country as well that could feed into those trade advisory groups. So, whereas I think there's one representative in terms of agriculture, there's about 11 advisory groups, and, as far as we can tell, there are no representatives from Wales on any of those advisory groups. So, how can they get a sense of what's going on? It would be really obvious to get somebody, perhaps from north Wales from aerospace, to be an adviser on that thing. If you think about Admiral in Cardiff, they could be on the financial services advisory group. My fear is that they've fallen into that typical UK Government trap of being very London-centric and not understanding that the UK is bigger than London.
Yes. Can you say if you believe it's acceptable that members of the UK Government's trade advisory group have more access to UK Government trade negotiation documents than the UK Parliament and devolved legislatures?
No. Clearly, Parliaments should have at least equal access to those kind of sensitive documents. So, I'd agree with you, I think that's not appropriate.
Okay. Do you believe that businesses that form part of the Government's trade advisory groups will be provided with more information relating to trade negotiations than the devolved Governments?
I don't know, because it's not our group, and I don't know how much they're going to share with them. That's, I guess, a question for the UK Government rather than for me, because they're not my groups.
Yes. Are you going to confirm the names of the Welsh Government trade advisory policy group, and will you be sharing any information from the Welsh Government trade advisory group with the UK trade advisory group?
Yes. So, we've told the UK Government that we have set up our own trade advisory group, and that's what's informing our policy decisions, that's what's informing our policy making. So, we're getting very much grass-roots people telling us how things work on the ground, what's going to impact on them. We've got 11 representatives on our trade policy advisory group and I'm very happy to send you a list of those. But just to give you an idea, we've got the Welsh Automotive Forum on it, we've got Aerospace Wales on it, FinTech Wales, TUC Cymru, Fair Trade Wales, the Food and Drink Federation. So, those are some examples, but maybe Emma could send a list of those to the committee so that you know who's there. At the moment, they're kind of umbrella groups. I guess, at some point, we want to get a bit more into the kind of people who are very much in the factories, who know what's going on, so that's where we'd like to get to.
And you are sharing Welsh Government's trade advice with the UK Government, yes?
Yes, we are.
Okay. And can you outline the work of the trade policy advisory group, please, in identifying distinct Welsh trade interests and how these have been communicated, again, to the UK Government?
I've had a meeting with them where we set out exactly what it was we were trying to get out of the trade advisory group. My officials have followed up with an hour meeting with each of the trade representatives individually, just to find out exactly what it is, where they think these really sensitive areas are. So, for things like the food and manufacturing sectors, what is it that would be most damaging for them if we were to end up in the wrong place? They've been giving us a lot of information in terms of regulatory alignment, product standards, animal welfare standards, tariffs. So, on all of those things, they've been really helping us out.
Just to give you an example, one of them—. We were asking them, 'Right, what do we want out of the US deal? What is it? Where could we make some gains?', and they were very clear in terms of agriculture that it could be quite an interesting market for lamb if that were to be open. So, I guess we weren't quite so sure whether they had the capacity to deliver to that market, how they would do that, and whether they practically could enter that market, but they were telling us, yes, they could. So, that was really useful to be able to feed in and that has informed the negotiations.
Fantastic. Thank you so much, Minister.
Minister, hearing your answers to Mandy, you indicated that they're not your advisory groups, they are the UK Government's advisory groups. I appreciate that, but, for example, Tata Steel is in that group, Airbus is in that group and these are major employers in Wales.
So, what is the input as far as you're able to get information from this group? Because they are affecting Wales, clearly. And particularly, as I understand, they've been asked to sign non-disclosure agreements, so it's critical that we have an indication of what's going on in these groups for our industries.
We'd love to have a bit more information. They're not our groups. It's really difficult. We've asked what's going on there, but simply—. You know, we can feed into them. What they get out of them—. It's very, very difficult because they're not our groups.
So, effectively, you are unaware of what discussions they're having on industries that are reflected in Wales.
Absolutely. We're not aware.
Okay, thank you. Alun, back to you.
I could see that Ms Edworthy was nodding during that last answer. So, my question was, really, if the Minister and the Welsh Government isn't informed about what is happening within these groups, I assume, therefore, that officials aren't either.
That is correct. You know that these TAGs have essentially replaced the old ETAGs—the expert trade advisory groups—which were, basically, dotted across Whitehall. So, they were owned by the department that had that expertise. So, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy ran a few, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs ran a few; there were groups that were already in place. But the Secretary of State for the DIT has taken them all—well, sort of got rid of those and brought them all back into DIT. So, DIT own them and DIT run them, and we weren't privy to all of the information that were in the ETAGs either. But we definitely now have been told that we will not be receiving read-outs or any information from these groups whatsoever. They are a DIT-owned entity and that, we hear, applies to other Government departments and territorial offices—they won't be involved either.
So, even DEFRA doesn't get to hear what the agricultural experts on that group are saying. You know, you think about the business Secretary, he must have his own trade advisers as well, who all exist, who have been there for a long time—they're being locked out as well. So, it's a little bit of empire building, possibly.
It may be, but it sounds entirely dysfunctional. Have you been told why this is the situation, because it's entirely unsatisfactory?
It is entirely unsatisfactory and we've made that clear, but I guess they're calling the shots on this one.
Thanks, Chair. I just want to add my voice for the same reasons as Alun Davies just said. It's absolutely unsatisfactory at the moment. I mean, exactly what you said, Dai: these are businesses in our areas—Tata Steel on your patch, Tata Steel on my patch, Airbus. These are the lifeblood of our communities. The Welsh Government needs to know what's going on here. And I don't know whether we should perhaps have a conversation later on about potentially writing as a committee to this body to say that this is wrong and we need it addressed, and just to add our voices and try and throw weight behind the Minister's argument as well to get this information across, so that the Minister can go on and use it and we can try and support our local economy, because it's absolutely devastating—
We will have that discussion afterwards, don't worry.
Alun, back to you.
It wouldn't be unhelpful, I must say.
Well, there is a detail, and I think it reflects what Alun was talking about earlier—the structural issues of dealing with this. Although I highlighted that it's all new, they are opportunities, but the structural issues have to be addressed for those opportunities to be grasped, basically. Alun.
It is curious, because the Minister will know better than any of the rest of us that when you were negotiating with the EU, you knew exactly what was going on all of the time, because the information was always published and you had the mandates agreed by Parliament and by the Council of Ministers, and the rest of it. And also, of course, councils were always broadcast, so there was a transparency and an accountability there, which seems to have disappeared.
Leading on from that, the common frameworks, which, I presume you're working on, and I think Jeremy has taken a lead on many of these issues, but I'm interested in how the common frameworks impact upon your portfolio responsibilities, Minister, and how international obligations will impact upon common frameworks. The concern I've expressed, and I think I've expressed it to you and to the Counsel General before, is that we're having a sort of shadow UK created in the darkness and the shadows, because if a common framework reaches agreement on the different ways of managing different economic activity or sectors and the rest of it, then it's very difficult for us to hold you as a Minister and UK Ministers and Scottish Ministers and Northern Irish to account collectively—it's almost impossible, in fact—and I'm concerned that we may be losing accountability here. But how, therefore, do the responsibilities that you hold in terms of international trade and responsibility for that area impact upon common frameworks and the way that common frameworks are being developed at the moment?
Obviously, it's Jeremy who leads on this but we would expect any standard text to fully recognise the fact that the responsibility for observing and implementing international obligations that relate to devolved matters rests with the Welsh Government. That's absolutely critical to what we're trying to ensure happens. I think it may be worth just giving an example of where we need to be thinking about this. So, in the space of something like mutual recognition in professional qualifications, how do you make sure that what is agreed here is something that can then be recognised internationally? So, there's an internal and an external provision that we need to look at, and we need to look at the arrangements that regulators currently have in terms of recognising those overseas qualifications and how those link to free trade agreements. So, all of these things are interwoven, but until we get a settled situation in terms of the framework agreement, it's going to be really difficult for us to move on and to get those embedded within the kind of trade agreements that we would like to see.
Okay. I appreciate that; I understand that. Have you made any assessment of how the internal markets Bill will potentially affect how international trade agreements will be developed, the sorts of structures that don't exist, as far as I can see, at the moment, and how it will impact upon the Welsh Government's ability to have the conversations with UK administrations and departments that you're dealing with over trade agreements? We understand that it's a bad Bill, doing bad things—I'd most probably agree with Theresa May about that, curiously—but do we understand how this Bill will also impact the ability of the Welsh Government to effectively have the conversations that you've described over the last hour or so in terms of international agreements?
I think we shouldn't underestimate the threat that this Bill makes not just to us in terms of Wales and our ability to set the standards that we think are right for our country, but also in terms of those international agreements and an understanding that if—. In that White Paper, there's a suggestion that international trade partners will seek access to the full UK market, so mutual recognition is going to be absolutely critical. So, the implication there is that if goods or a service are accepted in one part of the UK, they've got to automatically therefore be accepted in Wales, and that, fundamentally, I think, undermines the devolution settlement. So, this is really serious and could undo a lot of the work and the relationships that we've made already because, actually, if that's the case, why would they bother listening to us in future and build all the infrastructure we want? If they don't have to listen to us, who cares?
Yes, look, it's certainly the most destructive piece of legislation that I've seen introduced in the House of Commons and I think it will have significant repercussions in terms of any potential future for the United Kingdom, but we're aware of that. I've got no further questions for the Minister on this.
Just a further point, Minister, is that there may be other members of the committee who might not be in agreement or have the same view as Alun had on that one. I'm trying to keep us non-political, as I said.
Finally from me, Minister, last week, you announced the appointment of ambassadors—three individuals, with one to come. Can I just simply ask the question, because we are forming international relations: what outcomes do you expect from those appointments?
So, this is a part of what we're planning to do in terms of diaspora strategies. We'll be publishing an action plan—Alun will be very pleased to hear—on diaspora, hopefully before Christmas, and this is part of that. We've identified people who will be able to effectively be flag carriers for us, speaking on our behalf in markets where they are already recognised. We're trying to look at a series of objectives, and there will be different fits for different countries. And, obviously, you have to look at what individuals you have available. So, one of the things we're trying to do, for example, is to promote cyber security. We've identified an expert in cyber security who happens to come from Bridgend, who lives on the west coast, who is extremely articulate, extremely well-connected and is happy to do some flag-waving for us and to make those connections on our behalf, to make introductions for Welsh companies, and also to do some networking with other Welsh professionals in the United States. So, that's an example of somebody who we're using specifically because they chime with the international strategy and those priorities there.
Koji Tokumasu is the Japanese representative. Now, he's very well known in rugby circles, and is able to get us access into places where we wouldn't be able to get access in Japan if it weren't for him. So, it's kind of horses for courses; what is it that can help us get to places that we wouldn't otherwise get to?
And then, the other person is the woman that used to be the head of GE in Nantgarw, who is from the United States and absolutely fell in love with Wales, and she is very high up in the industry in the United States and is very happy to make some introductions for us there as well.
So, those are the three that we've appointed so far. One of the things that I've been very clear about—because I think there have been efforts in the past to do this kind of thing by the Welsh Government—is that I think they haven't been sustainable because we haven't given it the support that they perhaps needed. So, the last thing I want to do is to get them to introduce companies, for example, who may want to come to Wales and they're not followed up. I just don't want to jeopardise our reputation and all of their reputations, so we're going to limit the numbers to make sure that we can give them the kind of service that we hope they will need.
Okay. So, this is the launch of your attack on soft power, basically—to try to use soft power to drive the agenda forward.
It's part of it, yes, and there will be another action plan on soft power coming out again before Christmas. So, all of that has been worked up right over the summer. We've listed what we're already doing, and we're listing—. Obviously, in the face of COVID, we've had to adapt a little bit in terms of what's possible, but we will try and get you copies of that as soon as it is published.
Thank you. Are there any other Members with any other questions? I see there are not, so, therefore, we have come to the end of the session slightly earlier than we anticipated, Minister. Thank you very much for your time this afternoon. As you know, you will receive a copy of the transcript for any factual inaccuracies to be identified. If you do see any, please let us know so we can correct them as soon as possible. So, once again, thank you very much for your time and we look forward to seeing you again in the near future.
If committee members now move on to the next item in the agenda, which is item 3, papers to note, we have the following: the nutrition framework summary report, 9 September 2020, provided by the Welsh Government. Are Members content to note that? I see they are.
Paper 2 is correspondence from the Counsel General and Minister for European Transition regarding the inter-institutional agreement and inter-governmental relations review ministerial meetings of 17 September 2020. Are Members again prepared to note that? Alun.
Yes, happy to note it, but I think we do need to look at this as well, because one of the issues we've just been discussing with the international relations Minister is that of accountability and the democratic accountability of different structures within the United Kingdom. Now, whilst I was a supporter of the inter-governmental agreement and the structures that we seem to have at the moment—although after that session I’m less convinced that those structures exist in reality—I think there is a requirement for institutional oversight of these structures and institutional accountability. And I think it would be an useful idea if we were, as a committee, to meet with the relevant committee—I think Dai Lloyd's a member of that as well, the justice and scrutiny committee—to look at some of these institutional and structural issues across the UK.
Thank you. I think we are looking at a possibility of discussing that. And I think we should also express our concern that this committee has been pursuing this agenda for quite some time. The inter-governmental review, I think, was talked about two years ago, and we still haven't had a response—it hasn't come to a conclusion. So, I think we should, as a committee, talk to the Legislation, Justice and Constitution Committee and also raise our concerns once again over the time taken to complete something that should have been completed originally within six months, and we're almost two years down the line now. With those provisos, do we note the letter? Thank you.
The next letter to note is correspondence from the Chair of the Legislation, Justice and Constitution Committee regarding the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill. Are Members, at this point, content to note that?
It's a copy of the letter he sent to Simon Hart, the Secretary of State for Wales.
Can we make sure we see a copy of the reply as well? I'm very happy with Mick's letter, I think it's an excellent letter, and it does outline a lot of the concerns that many of us have over this appalling piece of legislation, but it'd be interesting to receive a reply on those issues as well.
What we will do, therefore, is we will write to Mick, who is Chair of that committee, and ensure that we have a copy of the response he receives from the Secretary of State if we are not included in the response itself. Okay. Other than that, happy to note?
And finally paper 4, correspondence from the Minister for Housing and Local Government, which was sent to all committee Chairs regarding the draft national development framework, which I know is being discussed next week, I believe, in the Chamber. At this point in time, if Members wish to discuss if we wish to bring anything forward on recommendations, I suggest that we do that in our private meeting afterwards. But are we prepared to note at this point in time? Thank you. Therefore, we'll note that.
bod y pwyllgor yn penderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.42(vi) a (ix).
that the committee resolves to exclude the public from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 17.42(vi) and (ix).
Cynigiwyd y cynnig.
We move on to the next item of business, which actually is a motion under Standing Order 17.42(vi) and (ix) to resolve to exclude the public from the remainder of today's meeting. Are Members content to do so? I see they are, and therefore we will now move into private session for the remainder of today's meeting.
Derbyniwyd y cynnig.
Daeth rhan gyhoeddus y cyfarfod i ben am 15:03.
The public part of the meeting ended at 15:03.