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New Zealand

Sustainable and Inclusive Trade Declaration

Marking 40 Years of Australia-New Zealand Closer Economic Relations


  1. The 40th anniversary of the Australia-New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (CER) in 2023 underscores the ongoing vitality and prominence of our bilateral partnership. Central to this partnership is our close cooperation on sustainable and inclusive trade, which supports and drives our respective transitions to net zero emissions and pathways to achieving sustainable development and prosperity for all our people.
  2. This Declaration amplifies existing commitments across our extensive areas of bilateral, regional and global economic collaboration. It recognises the importance we place on aligning our trade goals with efforts to urgently respond to the climate crisis. Equally, the Declaration underlines the comprehensive nature of our agreements and arrangements under CER, which is an instrumental and enduring framework that enables and deepens trade, business and investment ties as well as people to people links between our two countries.  
  3. The collaboration we continue to take forward to secure our sustainable and inclusive trade future is founded upon a set of common objectives and shared principles.

Common Objectives

  1. Our common objectives under this Declaration are to:
    1. emphasise our shared commitment to fostering open, rules-based international trade and economic cooperation among countries, and the importance of this effort in confronting global challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution, and in delivering on the promise of sustainable development for all our people, including by embracing Indigenous values and knowledge;
    2. guide our collaborative work in areas of mutual interest, including existing activities to advance economic prosperity through sustainable and inclusive trade, and to support our respective transitions to net zero emissions;
    3. support innovative approaches to effectively address the challenges of transitioning to net-zero emissions, including by embracing and facilitating access to new and low carbon technologies, renewable energy and decarbonisation solutions;
    4. work closely with the business community in both countries to further sustainable and inclusive trade, including by promoting private sector investment and finance; and
    5. foster sustainable and inclusive trade cooperation more broadly, including by promoting innovative and best practice policies, standards, regulations, measures and methodologies, and through the Single Economic Market (SEM) agenda, as well as cooperating to promote those approaches in our region and globally.

Shared Principles

  1. Based on our comprehensive bilateral free trade agreement and the strength of our very close economic relationship, and in addition to our existing CER commitments, we emphasise the following shared principles to advance sustainable and inclusive trade:
    1. accelerating action on climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution and other environmental and economic challenges in a responsible and effective manner that promotes and does not arbitrarily or unjustifiably restrict trade and investment, so as to create tangible and inclusive benefits for the economy and workforce, including in green supply chains, sustainable agriculture and food systems, the built environment, clean and renewable energy, carbon markets, green finance, the circular economy, and disaster risk reduction;
    2. recognising that international trade and investment should deliver inclusive and sustainable prosperity and address, not exacerbate, inequities and inequalities, and that in doing so, the human rights, interests and perspectives of different groups, including women and girls, Indigenous Peoples, youth and children, older persons, minorities, LGBTQIA+ persons, migrants, those living in rural and remote areas, persons with disabilities and others in vulnerable situations, are integral considerations in trade policies;
    3. recognising our commitment to the rules-based international trading system and to working closely together to further sustainable and inclusive trade action and outcomes through various multilateral and plurilateral fora, including: the World Trade Organization (WTO), Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), World Customs Organization (WCO), Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) and the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG);
    4. recognising the important and unique connection Indigenous Peoples have to the environment, land and seas, and their right to maintain, control, protect and develop their systems of knowledge, cultural expressions, practices and values, as well as the valuable contribution Indigenous histories, knowledge and knowledge systems, cultures and practices can make towards climate solutions and sustainable trade and investment;
    5. recognising the significant impact that climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution has on livelihoods, security and well-being of Pacific peoples, particularly women and girls in all their diversity, and noting the unique role of trade in contributing to sustainable development for a prosperous and resilient Pacific region;
    6. sharing information, perspectives, knowledge and expertise, and deploying sound data, inclusive, participatory and evidence-based analysis, including drawing on national circumstances, to inform and review progress on our joint policies, decisions, measures and activities;
    7. fostering better alignment and convergence of standards, technical regulations and conformity assessment procedures between countries, and rules that improve the interoperability of systems, strengthen the integration of markets and reduce potential barriers to trade and investment;
    8. recognising the critical role of public and civil society engagement, including with Indigenous Peoples and non-government stakeholders, the private and public sectors, trade unions, civil society organisations and relevant international organisations, as integral partners in advancing cooperation on sustainable and inclusive trade;
    9. collaborating in international fora in recognition of the range of policies that can facilitate the transition to net zero, and to uphold the use of emissions reduction policies that are designed and applied in a manner consistent with international obligations including at the WTO and under United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change done at New York on 9 May 1992 (UNFCCC), and the Paris Agreement done at Paris on 12 December 2015; and
    10. recognising the amplification effect of working closely together in regional and multilateral fora, and the critical importance of addressing global challenges through sustainable and inclusive trade and upholding and implementing our international commitments and cooperative arrangements, including under:
      1. the UNFCCC and Paris Agreement;
      2. the Convention on Biological Diversity, done at Rio de Janeiro on 5 June 1992, and Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, done at Montreal on 19 December 2022;
      3. other multilateral environment agreements to which we are a party;
      4. the Global Methane Pledge;
      5. the World Trade Organization (WTO), and other multilateral, regional and bilateral agreements and arrangements regarding sustainable and inclusive trade;
      6. international human rights and labour agreements to which we are party, including but not limited to the International Labour Organization Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its Follow-up done at Geneva on 18 June 1998 as amended in 2022 the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women done at New York on 18 December 1979;
      7. various trade agreements, including CER, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, PACER Plus, the IPEF, the Agreement Establishing the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area; and
      8. the Indigenous Peoples Economic and Trade Cooperation Arrangement (IPETCA) and the Australia and Aotearoa-New Zealand Indigenous Collaboration Arrangement (ICA).

Sustainable Future

  1. Recognising the urgency of the climate crisis and its impact globally, particularly in our shared region, as well as that of other critical environmental challenges such as biodiversity loss and pollution, we will continue to work together to secure our sustainable future by:
    1. taking forward sustainable trade issues in international fora, including in APEC, the WTO, ITAG, IPEF, CPTPP, and other trade agreements to which we are both parties;
    2. promoting awareness of the damaging consequences that environmentally harmful subsidies across all sectors can have, including by supporting and leveraging the evidence base developed through the OECD, and taking action to reform, reduce or eliminate environmentally harmful subsidies globally through the WTO, APEC and other international fora, and to this end:
      1. we reaffirm our shared ambition to reform the global use of environmentally harmful agricultural support measures, including through continuing urgently needed progress on Article XX of the WTO Agreement on Agriculture and advancing other international cooperation efforts;
      2. we welcome the WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies as a contribution to sustainable fisheries and use of marine resources, and look forward to its prompt entry into force and reaffirm our commitment to working together towards the speedy conclusion of negotiations on comprehensive and effective rules on fisheries subsidies that contribute to overcapacity and overfishing; and
      3. we will collaborate on trade-related aspects of fossil fuel subsidy reform including in the WTO, APEC and OECD in line with the urgent need to address climate change.
    3. halting and reversing biodiversity loss, including by implementing the Global Targets for 2030 and Global Goals for 2050 of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, and by advancing further multilateral work in other fora to encourage collective action;
    4. combating plastic pollution, including cooperating on trade-related measures such as encouraging the development of and access to environmentally sound alternatives to plastics throughout the value chain, addressing the role of subsidies and other fiscal incentives, managing plastic waste in an environmentally sound and safe manner, and by collaborating in the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee on Plastic Pollution and in other international fora, such as APEC and the WTO;
    5. preventing and reducing marine litter, shipping, aviation, land and other transport-related pollution, including to reach net zero shipping emissions by no later than 2050 in line with the work of the International Maritime Organization, and to reduce aviation emissions in line with the work of the International Civil Aviation Organisation;
    6. preventing the movement of terrestrial and aquatic invasive alien species across borders through trade-related pathways;
    7. conserving and sustainably managing fisheries resources and marine ecosystems, acknowledging their contribution to livelihoods of persons engaged in responsible fishing and aquaculture practices, including in the Pacific region, and collaborating in regional and global fora, using the best available science to achieve good fisheries governance and combat overfishing and illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing;
    8. accelerating the transition to sustainable agriculture and food systems in a manner which facilitates rather than restricts trade and investment and as a consequence, global food security, including through international cooperation and promotion of our shared principles, and which recognises the role of Indigenous values and practices;
    9. facilitating efforts to support the management and trade of sustainable and legally harvested forest resources and products, including promoting the role of the forestry and wood processing sector in the transition to a low-carbon future, in recognition of forestry's importance for delivering a variety of ecosystem services and low-emissions materials;   
    10. cooperating on policy and regulatory frameworks relating to energy transition, including on the development of emerging renewable energy technologies, and the accelerated development of renewable energy, critical minerals and strategic metals and other economic sectors that that will be vital to net zero transition;
    11. facilitating just transitions for our workers, workforces, sectors, regions and communities, including Indigenous Peoples, affected by climate change and the decarbonisation of our economies;
    12. aligning our work on the development of sustainable finance frameworks to enhance interoperability and support businesses operating across the economic region, including to drive finance flows towards decarbonisation solutions, building resilience, adaptation, research, development, commercialisation, availability, accessibility, affordability, and deployment of zero and low-emissions technology;
    13. facilitating efforts to transition towards a circular economy, including through promoting waste avoidance, greater resource and energy efficiency and interoperable and mutually reinforcing circular economy policies and solutions in our countries;
    14. aligning standards and promoting the expansion of trade and investment in environmental goods and services domestically, internationally and at the WTO and APEC, including environmental and low emissions technologies, clean and renewable energy and enabling infrastructure, inputs vital to these sectors and energy efficient goods and services;
    15. encouraging enterprises operating within our respective territories to adopt, into their policies and practices, principles of responsible business conduct; and
    16. where appropriate, cooperating to consider disaster management-related implementation risks, including by harnessing opportunities the transition to net zero presents for disaster risk reduction efforts.

Inclusive Trade and Investment

  1. Recognising the importance of making international trade and investment policies more inclusive to ensure that the benefits of trade and investment are broadly and equitably shared, we will continue to work together by:
    1. taking forward inclusive trade issues in international fora, including in APEC, the WTO, ITAG, IPEF, CPTPP, and other trade agreements to which we are both parties;
    2. collaborating to advance gender equality in trade and investment and to ensure international trade and investment supports women's economic empowerment, including through implementing the objectives of the WTO Joint Ministerial Declaration on Trade and Women's Economic Empowerment made at the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference in Buenos Aires in December 2017 and through cooperation under the Global Trade and Gender Arrangement (GTAGA);
    3. ensuring that the rights and economic interests of Indigenous Peoples are appropriately integrated in, and are reinforced and not undermined by, international trade and investment policy and activity, including by:
      1. reaffirming the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (United Nations Declaration) adopted in New York on 13 September 2007, a nd the rights and obligations under our respective legal, constitutional or treaty arrangements with Indigenous Peoples, including for Aotearoa New Zealand Te Tiriti o Waitangi / the Treaty of Waitangi; 
      2. ensuring Indigenous perspectives, voices and effective participation are appropriately embedded in trade and investment activities;
      3. continued bilateral cooperation and partnership with Indigenous Peoples in our respective countries to support inclusive trade and investment outcomes for Indigenous Peoples in regional and multilateral fora and negotiations, including Indigenous to Indigenous Trade, investment and cooperation;
      4. taking forward and supporting collaborative activity on Indigenous-led priorities, through IPETCA and the ICA as well as in international fora such as the OECD and APEC; and
      5. expanding business networks for Indigenous businesses, including for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), Indigenous women and Indigenous youth;
    4. promoting the enforcement of internationally recognised labour rights, including measures to prevent and combat Forced Labour and Modern Slavery in supply chains and promote decent work, within trade policy, in line with our commitments as founding members of the International Labour Organization; and
    5. ensuring international trade and trade policy reinforces rather than undermines international human rights, including through implementing commitments under human rights agreements to which we are party.

Future Work

  1. In making this Declaration, we highlight our commitment to ensuring that CER remains modern and fit for purpose into the future, including by ensuring that our ongoing work towards a Single Economic Market delivers impactful and concrete outcomes on areas such as: sustainable aviation and shipping; green customs initiatives; common or interoperable sustainable finance and investment frameworks; alignment of climate and biodiversity reporting standards for businesses; consideration of policies to address carbon leakage; and other emerging issues and joint priorities.
  2. We will take stock of our progress in promoting the sustainability and inclusivity objectives of this Declaration in our ongoing regular meetings of CER Trade Ministers. We will also actively consider opportunities to further our bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation, advocacy and initiatives to achieve the sustainability and inclusivity objectives of this Declaration, including the potential for future CER instruments to advance these issues.

Declared and signed on 11th August 2023 in Adelaide, Australia by:

  • For the Government of Australia: Senator the Hon Don Farrell, Minister for Trade and Tourism
  • For the Government of New Zealand: The Hon Damien O'Connor MP, Minister for Trade and Export Growth
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