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Australia-United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement

Australia-UK FTA objectives

Australia has negotiated a comprehensive, ambitious and high-quality FTA with the United Kingdom (UK). This document provides an overview of Australia’s objectives during the negotiation process.

Expand trade in goods

Australia sought to:

  • Improve market access for Australian agricultural and industrial products
  • Reduce barriers to trade and costs through modern customs, rules of origin and trade facilitation procedures
  • Include mechanisms that address non-tariff barriers to trade.

Improve access for services providers

Australia sought to:

  • Lock in access for services exporters and create opportunities in sectors of key commercial interest, such as financial and professional services
  • Establish best practice digital trade commitments, which strike a balance between facilitating modern trade and ensuring appropriate protections in the online environment.

Increase two-way investment flows

Australia sought to:

  • Establish modern investment rules that promote two-way investment, supporting economic growth
  • Enhance transparency frameworks and regulatory regimes to provide greater certainty for investors.

Promote balanced rules on intellectual property rights

Australia sought to:

  • Support innovation and creativity through the facilitation of trade and investment in intellectual property
  • Maintain a balance between the interests of rights holders, users and the public interest.

Promote opportunities for SMEs and on government procurement

Australia sought to:

  • Agree on ambitious rules that assist small and medium-sized enterprises to take advantage of the benefits of this agreement
  • Ensure improved access to government procurement markets for Australian suppliers on the basis of clear and transparent rules for tendering.

Promote shared values on trade and sustainable development

Australia sought to:

  • Promote compliance with internationally-recognised labour standards
  • Ensure high levels of environmental protection, consistent with internationally agreed principles, standards and rules.

Establish strong legal and institutional frameworks to ensure the effective implementation of the FTA

Australia sought to:

  • Establish streamlined institutional mechanisms to ensure the agreement operates efficiently and minimises red tape
  • Establish a best-practice state-to-state dispute settlement mechanism that provides transparent and efficient procedures for settling disputes
  • Provide exceptions to ensure the government can continue to regulate in the public interest.
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