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Minister's Foreword

Picture of Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb

Welcome to Trade at a Glance 2014, a summary of Australia's trade, investment and economic performance.

Trade and investment are powerful drivers of our economy. When the economy prospers, so does the nation, with more jobs for Australians and greater prosperity.

Australia is open for business. In the 12 months since our last publication, we have signed Free Trade Agreements with two of our major trading partners, Japan and Korea. Once these agreements come into force, our FTAs will cover 42 per cent of our total trade. And we're working hard on agreements with China and other key economic partners.

Australia's trade in goods and services reached a new high in 2013, growing by 3.7 per cent to $647.4 billion (up from $624.5 billion in 2012).

Our trade activity is largely focused on the Asia-Pacific region, with over 70 per cent taking place with member economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation APEC group.

Australia has a strong international reputation as a safe, reliable and profitable place to invest. For over 100 years foreign investment has been critical for the development of Australia's economy. Foreign investment stimulates economic activity, builds new industries and creates jobs. Research has found that a 10 per cent increase in foreign investment in Australia could lead to a more than one per cent increase in GDP by 2020.

Our government is prioritising economic diplomacy in our international engagement with a strong focus on trade, growth, investment and business across the work of my portfolio. Our economic diplomacy seeks to enhance both Australia's prosperity and global prosperity.

I trust that you will find Trade at a Glance a useful resource.

The Hon Andrew Robb AO MP
Minister for Trade and Investment

Last Updated: 29 January 2015
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