Trade Talk, 25 May 2017
Supporting open, ruled-based trade at APEC Trade Ministers' Meeting
"APEC helps to drive greater levels of trade and investment across our region," Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo said ahead of the APEC Trade Ministers' Meeting in Hanoi. At the meeting Minister Ciobo re-affirmed Australia's support for an open, rules-based trading system and a collective response to the current challenges facing regional and global trade. Minister Ciobo also highlighted the need for APEC economies to take steps to further advance both goods and services liberalisation, and urged APEC economies to double-down on efforts to deepen regional economic integration in the face of protectionist headwinds in some parts of the world.
Australia-Hong Kong FTA negotiations commence
Minister Ciobo announced the launch of the Australia-Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement negotiations on 16 May with his counterpart Mr Gregory So Kam-leung, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development. "Seventy-six per cent of the Australian economy is built on services. Twenty-two per cent of our exports are services exports. It's the disparity between those two numbers that represents the real opportunity that exists in terms of an agreement like this," Minister Ciobo said.
Launch of FTA negotiations with Peru
Minister Ciobo announced the launch of the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement negotiations on 24 May with Peru's Minister for Foreign Trade and Tourism Eduardo Ferreyros. Peru presents a growing opportunity for Australian exporters that this FTA will help unlock. Over the last decade, Peru has been one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America, and the world, with annual GDP growth averaging 5.9 per cent between 2005 and 2015.
11 TPP countries agree on next steps
Ministers from 11 TPP countries have agreed on the value of realising the TPP's benefits and agreed to launch a process to assess options for bringing the TPP into force expeditiously.
RCEP Ministers' meeting
Minister Ciobo led Australia's participation at the Third Intersessional RCEP Ministerial Meeting hosted by Vietnam on 21-22 May 2017. Minister Ciobo reiterated Australia's commitment to the RCEP negotiations producing a credible Agreement.
Services exports swell in 2016: latest figures
Australia's exports of services rose by just over 9 per cent from $65bn to $71bn in 2016, ABS figures released yesterday show. Services exports to China reflect particularly strong demand, growing by 16 per cent from $9.7bn to reach $11bn over the same period.
Tapping into trade-enhancing infrastructure opportunities
China outlined plans to invest up to US$150 billion over the next five years at the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. In Beijing for the Forum, Minister Ciobo said Australia supported initiatives which improved infrastructure development and increased trade and investment opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region. "Australian companies have the expertise and experience to contribute to Belt and Road infrastructure projects. Open bidding processes will lead to better outcomes for all countries," he said.
Promoting Australian business and tourism in Shanghai
Assistant Minister for Trade Tourism and Investment Keith Pitt visited Shanghai recently to build Australia's commercial, cultural and tourism ties. Mr Pitt met Australian start-up enterprises accessing mentoring, finance and business development opportunities via the Australian Government's Shanghai Landing Pad.
Stronger Australia-Papua New Guinea business and trade ties
Minister for International Development and the Pacific Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells outlined some of the opportunities and challenges in Australia and Papua New Guinea's evolving economic partnership in a recent keynote speech delivered in Port Moresby. Australia and Papua New Guinea are exploring ways to expand business opportunities, improve market access and make it easier for tourists, seasonal workers and business people to move between our countries. Australia's new Consulate-General in Lae is a further boost to our trade and investment ties.
Submissions on China FTA services and investment reviews
DFAT is inviting submissions on reviews of the services and investment chapters of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement and the associated Investment Facilitation Arrangement (IFA) Memorandum of Understanding. The information stakeholders provide will assist the Government in determining Australia's key priorities for these reviews.
Tell us your experience of using FTAs
DFAT encourages Australian businesses to participate in a short online survey on utilisation of Australia's FTAs. The survey is part of independent research by PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia (PwC) to help identify and explore barriers to business use of FTAs, and examine how business use can be further optimised.
Important changes to US-bound air cargo screening requirements
From 1 July 2017, screening requirements for air cargo to the United States will change. Australian-based exporters, freight forwarders and airlines need to adopt new security measures to comply with the new US requirements. Australian companies should act now, or they will not be able to export to the US by air after 1 July.
Did You Know?
5000 Australian companies currently do business in Papua New Guinea, which is our closest neighbour with less than four kilometers separating us at the nearest point.
Upcoming Trade Events
Austrade Chief Economist: Australia in an Uncertain World
Brisbane, QLD, 30 May
Austrade Chief Economist Mark Thirlwell will deliver this guest public lecture titled Australia in an Uncertain World at Griffith University's Asia Institute.
North Asia FTA Training Session for SMEs: Selling your goods to China
Dandenong, VIC, 31 May
With the help of a FTA Training Provider Grant, the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry will deliver this workshop covering the key trends and opportunities in China and the information you need to export under ChAFTA, including how you can take advantage of preferential tariff treatment, understand rules of origin, and a checklist of export documentation requirements and record keeping.
Take your business to the world: Export Ready Program
Unley, SA, 1 June
Business SA's Export Ready Program has been developed especially for South Australian businesses. The program covers the vital elements of exporting, with industry experts facilitating each session and Business SA's Export Adviser providing monthly one-on-one coaching sessions.
Your path to China export success - ChAFTA Training Program
Sydney, NSW, 8 June
With the help of a FTA Training Provider Grant, the Australia China Business Council and the ECA are offering this ChAFTA Training Program to train businesses on how to use ChAFTA and reap the benefits of a deeper engagement with China. This event will also be held in Mt Gambier on 20 June.
Trade Articles obtained from non-Australian Government sources do not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government.