Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement update
The Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement (KAFTA) is delivering real benefits for Australian businesses and consumers following its entry into force on 12 December 2014. KAFTA is a living agreement, with its ongoing implementation guided by a number of in-built committees and review mechanisms. These committees facilitate engagement and dialogue between Australia and Korea and ensure the agreement continues to deliver.
The KAFTA Trade in Goods Committee met in August 2018, and meetings of other Committees including the KAFTA Rules of Origin and Trade Facilitation Committee and the KAFTA Joint Committee are being arranged for later this year. The KAFTA Joint Committee, co-chaired by the Trade Ministers from each country, previously met in November 2015 and November 2016.
Written submissions from businesses and relevant organisations are encouraged ahead of the Joint Committee meeting, addressed to KoreaFTA@dfat.gov.au
Under KAFTA, Australian goods and services exporters have benefitted from tariff cuts and improved market access. A research report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) released in March this year found Australia's Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) are seeing high rates of business utilisation. The research found more than 80 per cent (by value) of eligible merchandise exports were benefitting from tariff preferences under KAFTA.
Businesses can check what tariff reductions and services provisions they are eligible for under KAFTA by checking the FTA Portal website. For further information on KAFTA, please see the DFAT Free Trade Agreement's website.
KAFTA is supported by initiatives such as the Australian Trusted Traders program, which offers a range of benefits to accredited Trusted Traders, including streamlined border clearances, duty deferral, advanced rulings, and other measures saving time and money. Following full implementation of the Mutual Recognition Agreement with Korea, Trusted Traders receive priority treatment of goods at the border through expedited clearance, reduced documentation and cargo inspections, and minimised disruption to trade flows. Australian businesses are encouraged to become Trusted Traders, with further information available here.