About the TPP negotiations
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) is one possible pathway toward realising the vision of a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific. The Asia-Pacific region is a key driver of global economic growth; close to half of all global trade, and around 70 per cent of Australia's trade flows through the region.
There are currently 12 parties negotiating the TPP, five of which are among Australia's top 10 trading partners (Japan – 2, United States – 3, Singapore – 5, New Zealand – 7, Malaysia – 9). Australia's participation in the TPP negotiations will further strengthen our trade relationship with these key trading partners. Australia supports the expansion of TPP membership over time to other economies in the Asia-Pacific region.
Australia is a dynamic and open trading economy. Australia’s trade in goods and services reached a new high in 2013. Two-way trade grew by 3.5 per cent to $646.1 billion in 2013, up from $624 billion in 2012. Australia's international trade links have resulted in strong economic growth, even through a turbulent global economic environment. Our pursuit of trade liberalisation, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, will continue to ensure our economic prosperity into the future.
Conclusion of the TPP would open new trade and investment opportunities for Australia in the Asia-Pacific region, further integrate our economy in this fast growing region, and promote and facilitate regional supply chains. By setting commonly agreed rules and promoting transparency of new laws and regulations, the agreement will provide certainty for businesses and reduce costs and red tape for Australian exporters, service suppliers and investors.
Australia's decision to participate in the TPP in 2008 followed an extensive public consultation process. Overall, there was widespread support for Australia's participation in the TPP. Australian individuals and businesses were interested in potential new export opportunities the TPP offered, and were keen for Australia to be involved in the shaping of trade rules for the region.
The Government continues to take all available opportunities to engage with interested parties. DFAT has held more than 700 public consultations on the TPP negotiations, and is open to receiving submissions on the TPP at any time. Input received through the consultation process is being used to inform the Government's priorities and objectives for Australia's ongoing work on the TPP.
Key interests and benefits
- The TPP has the potential to forge stronger economic links between economies in the Asia-Pacific region based on common rules for trading. It is in Australia’s interests to be involved in order to shape the direction of the initiative.
- The TPP will provide new opportunities for Australian goods to be used in manufacturing and production processes in the region.
- Australia does not have existing trade agreements with a number of the current TPP parties. The TPP could provide Australian exporters of goods and services with increased access to these new markets. The TPP could also build on the FTAs Australia has concluded by providing additional access for Australian goods and services into those TPP countries.
- The TPP provides an opportunity to benefit Australia’s significant services sector, through enhanced access for service suppliers involved in education, legal, financial, mining and agricultural services.
- The TPP will provide substantive outcomes on electronic commerce which will benefit consumers and businesses.
An overview of the TPP negotiations, including its history, Australia's negotiating objectives and position on key issues under negotiation:
TPP overview [PDF 655 KB] | Text only version of the presentation [DOCX 305 KB]