Australian Government - Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Advancing the interests of Australia and Australians internationally

Australian Government - Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Advancing the interests of Australia and Australians internationally



1.1.7 Bilateral, regional and multilateral trade negotiations

Overview

The department supported the Government’s development of a new trade policy statement, Trading our way to more jobs and prosperity, launched by Dr Emerson in April 2011. The statement provided a framework for the fulfilment of the Government’s commitment to free trade as a pathway to more and better jobs and greater prosperity.

The statement reinforced the Government’s commitment to multilateral trade reform and liberalisation, including the successful conclusion of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations as Australia’s highest trade policy priority. The department played a leading role over the past year, in increasingly difficult circumstances, in efforts to conclude the Doha Round. It supported the Government’s participation in the G20, APEC and the OECD to strengthen international support for trade liberalisation and a successful conclusion to the Round. We supported Dr Emerson’s efforts to combat protectionism, including helping to secure strong anti-protectionist pledges from G20 and APEC leaders in November 2010.

The department also pursued an active wider multilateral trade agenda, including our participation in the negotiation of an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), a WTO review of Australia’s trade policy, participation in WTO disputes and the ongoing monitoring and transparency requirements associated with the WTO Agreements.

Consistent with the Government’s trade policy statement, the department supported negotiations for high quality, truly liberalising bilateral and regional trade agreements that do not detract from, but support, the multilateral system.

We are working to advance deeper regional economic integration, including through advocating trade facilitation and economic reform. The department pursued this agenda through participation in ASEAN-related forums and APEC, as well as through the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other FTA negotiations.

Multilateral trade liberalisation and the WTO Doha Round negotiations

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The Minister for Trade, Dr Emerson (fourth from right), chairs a meeting of Trade Ministers on the Doha Round of WTO negotiations in Paris on 26 May 2011.
Photo: Alastair Miller

The department continued to play a leading role in efforts to achieve a successful conclusion to the Doha Round. We supported the efforts of Dr Emerson, as well as the then Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr Smith, to work with other WTO trade ministers to build political will and flexibility to conclude the Round. The department played a key role in efforts to steer the overall course of the negotiations, including in Australia’s capacity as Chair of the Cairns Group of agricultural exporters, and through our membership of the WTO G7 grouping (Australia, Brazil, China, the European Union, India, Japan, and the United States). We worked closely with WTO Director-General, Pascal Lamy, and other WTO Members.

Notwithstanding efforts across the Doha negotiating agenda, by May 2011 it became clear that differences among key players on agriculture and industrial market access issues, in particular, were unable to be bridged at this time. Consequently, the Round was unlikely to be concluded in 2011. We supported Dr Emerson’s efforts in May 2011 during the APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade meeting in Big Sky Montana and at the meeting he hosted in Paris during the OECD Ministerial Council Meeting, to find a way forward for the Round in the face of the impasse. At Dr Emerson’s Paris meeting of 20 WTO Members, Ministers discussed the Round and demonstrated their determination not to abandon it. The department also remained closely involved in ongoing negotiations in Geneva to chart a course for the Round up until the end of 2011 and beyond.

Australia continued to play a central role in WTO market access negotiations. In agriculture, Australia led the Cairns Group, provided technical input into complex negotiating issues and collaborated with Australian industry groups. At the forefront were efforts to finalise key outstanding issues, including the special safeguard mechanism for developing countries. On non-agricultural market access (NAMA), the department worked closely with key players, such as the United States, the European Union and Japan, to find solutions to issues blocking the negotiations, including for example sectoral tariff elimination initiatives. The department played a constructive role in developing proposals to liberalise markets for environmental goods and services.

We advocated for a higher profile for services in the intensified market access negotiations in the first quarter of 2011. The department identified a gap in the negotiations and introduced, along with like-minded countries, a new request on accounting services, reflecting the central role of such services in the business environment. To enable Australian businesses to pursue opportunities more easily, Australia’s priorities included reductions in foreign equity caps on investments, greater regulatory transparency and improved business mobility, particularly for fly-in fly-out services contractors and professionals. Priority sectors for market opening included financial services, telecommunications, professional services, education, mining-related and environmental services. We took a leading role in negotiations for the transparent and streamlined regulation of licensing and qualification requirements and procedures and technical standards for services.

In negotiations on trade remedies, such as anti-dumping, subsidies and countervailing duty measures, the department sought to ensure that changes to the rules would protect the rights of Australian industry, while promoting the interests of Australian exporters. Australia promoted broad prohibition of fisheries subsidies that lead to overfishing and overcapacity in the fisheries sector around the world and proposed eliminating subsidies for vessels that engage in destructive fishing practices. In negotiations towards an agreement on trade facilitation, we successfully built momentum with other WTO Members towards the possible finalisation of a negotiating text that would improve customs and other border procedures.

The department continued to advocate a successful conclusion to the Doha Round as a key measure to support developing countries’ sustainable development by helping them better reap the benefits of international trade. In addition, the department worked closely with AusAID to continue the Government’s strong support for trade-related development assistance which helps developing countries engage in the multilateral trading system and regional trade initiatives. The department managed the process for Australia to become a member of the Advisory Centre on WTO Law, an intergovernmental Geneva-based organisation that provides legal services on WTO law to developing countries. Trade officials from South-East Asia, Africa and Latin America were invited to Canberra for the biannual trade policy training course.

Supporting trade liberalisation in other international trade bodies

The department was active in ensuring that the G20 and APEC reinforced ongoing efforts to resist trade protectionist responses to recent developments in the global economy. The department’s efforts underpinned G20 Leaders’ agreement at the Seoul Summit (November 2010) to continue to monitor and assess ongoing implementation of their
anti-protectionist commitment and Leaders’ reaffirmation of their decision in Toronto 2010 to extend their standstill commitment until the end of 2013.

In APEC, Australia played a role in securing leaders’ agreement to extend the commitment on standstill made in 2008 to the end of 2013. Leaders agreed to refrain from raising new barriers to investment or to trade in goods and services, imposing new export restrictions, or implementing WTO inconsistent measures in all areas, including those that stimulate exports. Efforts helped to secure a Leaders’ commitment to roll back trade-distorting measures introduced during the global financial crisis. The department supported Dr Emerson in the APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade meeting in May 2011, which endorsed APEC Leaders’ anti-protectionist commitments and recognised the worth of the WTO as a bulwark against protectionism during a highly challenging period.

Through Australia’s permanent delegation to the OECD in Paris, at meetings of the OECD Trade Committee and by chairing its working party, the department advocated OECD action on trade and employment, aid for trade, trade and food security, regional trade agreements and aspects of trade and environment. The department supported Dr Emerson as head of the Australian Delegation to the Ministerial Council meeting in May 2011 where he promoted trade liberalisation and the need to ensure that political will to resist protectionism was maintained. We continued to work on a Services Trade Restrictiveness Index, which aims to measure how existing regulations restrict the international exchange of services.

Other multilateral trade policy issues

Australia’s WTO Trade Policy Review

The department managed the WTO’s 2011 Trade Policy Review of Australia (2011 Review). Under the WTO’s Trade Policy Review process, all WTO Members’ trade policies and practices are subject to regular review by other WTO Members. For the 2011 Review, the department prepared the Government’s public report on the Australian economy and assisted the WTO Secretariat with the preparation of its report. The department coordinated a whole-of-government response to issues concerning Australia’s trade policies and practices, including answering over 500 questions by other Members. The department led Australia’s delegation to the meeting on the 2011 Review in April, which recognised Australia as one of the most open economies in the world and welcomed the transparency of our trade policy and practices.

Compliance and dispute settlement

The department led the Government’s participation in the WTO dispute settlement system. The department continued to lead the whole-of-government task force in defending Australia’s position in the dispute initiated by New Zealand against Australia’s quarantine conditions affecting imports of New Zealand apples. The WTO held Australia’s quarantine conditions were not consistent with WTO rules on the grounds they were not sufficiently justified by science. The department is working with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry to implement the outcome of the WTO dispute.

The department led eight active WTO disputes as a third party. This provides an opportunity to comment on disputes with an indirect bearing on Australia’s policy or commercial interests. In 2010–11, Australia participated as a third party in disputes between the United States and China about anti-dumping and subsidies, and between the United States and Canada and Mexico on labelling requirements for beef. Australia continued to engage actively in WTO negotiations on reforming the WTO Dispute Settlement Understanding, which sets out the rules for WTO disputes.

The department advised other agencies and state and territory governments to ensure policy proposals were consistent with Australia’s WTO commitments. For example, the department provided legal advice on changes to Australia’s anti-dumping system, proposed legislation relating to the packaging of tobacco products and proposals for a carbon tax.

The department continued to monitor developments in other WTO Member countries through the WTO’s extensive committee system and associated notification of trade policy changes and developments, as well as through the regular reviews of individual Members’ trade policies (the WTO Trade Policy Review Mechanism). These efforts provided opportunities to raise concerns and seek to influence trade policy developments of concern to Australian exporters.

Sanitary and phytosanitary measures

To advance and promote the interests of Australia’s agricultural industries, the department continued involvement in the WTO Committee on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures to ensure Australian interests are considered by trading partners in applying SPS measures. The department worked closely with other government agencies within Australia to ensure domestic biosecurity and food safety policies are consistent with our international treaty obligations.

WTO accessions

The department completed bilateral negotiations in 2010–11 with Laos on the terms of market access for goods and services and continued to work closely with Russia on finalising the terms of its entry to the WTO, which remains in prospect for 2011. Samoa and Vanuatu were assisted in advancing their accession negotiations, which may also conclude in 2011.

Intellectual property

The department led Australia’s participation in the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) negotiations which concluded in late 2010, with Australia hosting the final legal verification process in December 2010. We delivered a strong outcome in the negotiations, achieving a final agreement requiring parties to have in place rigorous intellectual property enforcement standards to protect against trade in counterfeit and pirated goods, which will benefit Australia’s innovative and creative industries. Reflecting Australia’s effective intellectual property system, the ACTA is consistent with Australia’s existing laws. Adoption of the treaty will be subject to further government consideration.

The department participated in negotiations on intellectual property and genetic resources, traditional knowledge and folklore in the WTO, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and the Convention on Biological Diversity to defend Australia’s interests. Australia was involved in the intensified WTO negotiations on a register for geographical indications (i.e. products identified by their geographical origin, such as ‘champagne’). This involved ongoing advocacy against increased protection for geographical indications in key export markets in order to safeguard for Australian exporters the continued use of common product names (for example, ‘parmesan’ in relation to cheese).

Free trade agreement negotiations

Australia uses a strategic network of free trade agreements (FTAs) to further its trade interests. The department is responsible for advancing this agenda through leading whole-of-government negotiating teams and by consulting extensively with domestic stakeholders and the states and territories.

As at 1 July 2010, Australia has in place bilateral FTAs with New Zealand, the United States, Singapore, Thailand and Chile; and a regional agreement with New Zealand and ASEAN. As at 30 June 2011, the department was pursuing FTA negotiations with ROK, China, Japan, Malaysia, India, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the Pacific Island Forum countries (PACER Plus) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership parties. The department supported the launch of negotiations with Indonesia in November 2010, and with India in May 2011.

Republic of Korea Free Trade Agreement

By end of June 2011, the department held five rounds of FTA negotiations and four technical meetings with ROK since negotiations commenced in May 2009. In 2010–11 negotiations were held in Canberra (in November 2010) and Seoul (in August 2010, October 2010 and January 2011). The department worked with participants to achieve good progress with most chapters of the agreement complete or nearing completion. The department will continue to lead negotiations as they enter their final stage. Through the early part of 2011 ROK negotiators were distracted by domestic concerns including ratification of their trade agreements with the United States and the European Union. Prime Minister Gillard and Korean President, Lee Myung-bak, agreed during their meeting in April 2011 that negotiations should be concluded by the end of 2011 (also see North Asia 1.1.1).

Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

The department continues to lead Australia’s participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. TPP negotiations are progressing well, with the department leading the seven rounds completed since March 2010. Current members are Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. Trade ministers took stock of progress in the margins of the APEC meeting in Montana in May 2011, and set the goal to reach a broad outline of an agreement by the November 2011 APEC Leaders Meeting. The agreement aims to comprehensively address issues between the parties, with the goal of more closely integrating the economies of all members. The agreed objective of TPP negotiations is to produce a 21st century trade agreement which applies new approaches, such as regulating trade in goods, services and investment, as well as dealing with modern problems facing businesses in the Asia-Pacific region.

Personal Profile:

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Andrea Gleason

Andrea Gleason

Andrea Gleason has been Counsellor for trade policy at the Australian Embassy in Washington DC since July 2009. The United States is one of our most important economic partners—it is our third largest trading partner and largest source of investment—and this relationship is cemented by the Australia-US Free Trade Agreement.

Andrea’s focus is advocating regional trade liberalisation in the Asia-Pacific. This is particularly important given the United States is hosting the APEC forum in 2011. Australia, the US and seven other Asia-Pacific countries are currently negotiating a cutting-edge regional trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Andrea’s priority is to help raise awareness and build support in the United States for the TPP, to ensure the final agreement is passed by the US Congress. She works closely with the embassies of the other TPP parties to promote the TPP.

“Unlike in Australia, trade liberalisation does not enjoy broad bipartisan support in the United States. My role is essentially strategic. I explain to US business, Congressional staff, state and local governments, and academics the importance of trade liberalisation, including the TPP.”

China Free Trade Agreement

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The Minister for Trade, Dr Emerson holds talks with Chinese Minister of Commerce, Mr Chen Deming, in Beijing on 2 November 2010.

Since negotiations commenced in May 2005, the department participated in 15 rounds of meetings. Negotiations remained difficult and complex due to the range of interests and sensitivities on both sides. The department supported continuing discussions at ministerial level during Dr Emerson’s visits to China in November 2010 and April 2011. The Prime Minister restated Australia’s commitment to a comprehensive, high quality trade agreement with President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao during her visit to China in April 2011. The department will lead Australia’s negotiating team at a sixteenth round in July 2011 (also see North Asia 1.1.1).

Japan Free Trade Agreement

The department welcomed progress in the important area of agricultural market access when Japan released in November 2010 its Basic Policy on Comprehensive Economic Partnerships, which supported the need for agriculture reform, increased domestic competitiveness, and undertaking bilateral FTAs with major trading partners, with specific reference to Australia. The department led the twelfth round of negotiations held in Tokyo in February 2011.

Understandably, the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011 postponed the thirteenth round, scheduled for April 2011. The longer term impact of the earthquake and tsunami on the negotiation of the agreement remains unclear. We supported the Prime Minister’s visit to Japan in April 2011 when Prime Minister, Naoto Kan, confirmed that Japan was committed to concluding the FTA. They agreed negotiations should resume at the earliest possible date (also see North Asia 1.1.1).

Malaysia Free Trade Agreement

The department continued to make steady progress in negotiations with Malaysia with the department leading Australia’s participation in meetings in October 2010 and May 2011. We exchanged Australia’s market access offers on tariffs, services and investment with Malaysia during the reporting period. Key priorities include commitments from Malaysia that go beyond outcomes in the regional ASEAN–Australia–New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA), particularly in a range of goods and services and government procurement. In March 2011 the Prime Minister and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib called for conclusion of the negotiations within 12 months (also see South-East Asia 1.1.2).

Indonesia–Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

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The Minister for Trade, Dr Emerson, holds discussions with Indonesian Government representatives on IA-CEPA on 20 April 2011
L-R: Mr Hugh Borrowman, First Assistant Secretary, South-East Asia Division; Mr Greg Moriarty, Australian Ambassador to Indonesia; Dr Emerson, Minister for Trade; Mr Bruce Gosper, Deputy Secretary; Mr Michael Mugliston, Special Negotiator.

Prime Minister Gillard and Indonesian President Yudhoyono agreed in November 2010 to start negotiating an Indonesia–Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA–CEPA). It will cover trade, investment and economic cooperation issues, and build upon commitments in the AANZFTA. The department led pre-negotiation consultations that were held in December 2010, March 2011 and April 2011 to prepare a foundation for negotiations, after the expected entry into force of AANZFTA for Indonesia in 2011–12. The inaugural IA–CEPA economic cooperation pilot project—to strengthen village-based Brahman cattle production systems in Indonesia and assist small-scale cattle producers in rural Indonesia was agreed in June 2011. The department held stakeholder consultations around Australia and received submissions from interested parties (also see South-East Asia 1.1.2).

India Free Trade Agreement

Australia–India FTA negotiations were launched by Dr Emerson and Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma in May 2011. The negotiations, formally known as the Australia–India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement negotiations, will cover investment and trade in goods and services. The department has begun public consultations, which will help inform Australia’s negotiating positions (also see South and West Asia, Middle East and Africa 1.1.5).

Gulf Cooperation Council Free Trade Agreement

The department has been working to secure an early resumption of free trade negotiations with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)—a customs union comprising Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. We commenced free trade negotiations with the GCC in 2007 and there have been four negotiating rounds. The department has not been able to hold a negotiating round since June 2009 owing to the GCC’s internal review of its FTA negotiations with all partners. The department will continue to lobby for resumption of negotiations as the GCC remains an important market for a diverse range of Australian goods and services exports, including for Australia’s automotive sector, taking 81 per cent of total exports of Australian-made passenger motor vehicles in 2010.

Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) Plus

At their 41st Pacific Islands Forum meeting in August 2010, Pacific leaders welcomed progress on the negotiation of a new regional trade and economic agreement—known as the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) Plus. In close consultation with other agencies, the department led Australian efforts to advance the PACER Plus by presenting detailed Australian positions on the priority issues at officials’ negotiating sessions held in October 2010 and March 2011, and by supporting Pacific Islands Forum Trade Ministers’ decisions to advance negotiations (also see Pacific 1.1.6).

Implementation of existing free trade agreements

The Agreement Establishing the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)–Australia–New Zealand Free Trade Area (AANZFTA) entered into force for Laos and Cambodia in January 2011. The agreement is expected to enter into force for the remaining ASEAN signatory—Indonesia—in 2011–12, following completion of its domestic procedures for implementing the Agreement. The department supported Indonesia in finalising the transposition of its AANZFTA tariff schedule to the more up-to-date Harmonized System 2007 format in March 2011, a key requirement for entry into force.

The department hosted the second meeting of the AANZFTA FTA Joint Committee (FJC)—co-chaired by Australia, New Zealand and Brunei (on behalf of ASEAN) to oversight implementation of the Agreement—in November 2010 in Melbourne and participated in the third FJC meeting in Wellington in May 2011. The department pursued Australia’s interests in these discussions by addressing impediments to efficient use of the agreement by goods exporters and importers (particularly compliance with rules of origin requirements), making progress on several ‘built-in’ work programs aimed at promoting enhanced economic integration agendas and making progress on the rollout of the AANZFTA economic cooperation work program (see box).

To promote business awareness about the agreement, in November 2010 the department organised a seminar in Melbourne on the commercial opportunities AANZFTA offers. The seminar involved senior ASEAN trade officials and Australian business representatives. The department briefed industry groups and conferences on the benefits during 2010–11.

The department led Australia’s negotiations with ASEAN and the five other countries with which ASEAN has FTAs (China, India, Japan, Korea and New Zealand) on the next steps in regional economic integration. Four ASEAN Plus Working Groups have been established: on Rules of Origin, Customs Procedures, Tariff Nomenclature and Economic Cooperation. The May 2011 ASEAN Summit instructed the Working Groups to develop possible modalities for consolidating these FTAs. Australia is participating in the four working groups to ensure that the recommendations will better facilitate trade and lessen the current bureaucratic impediments to many of the FTAs in the Asia-Pacific region.

The department advanced the objectives of the Australia–United States Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA) as it moved into its seventh year of operation in January 2011. The department collaborated with other agencies such as the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry to resolve technical market access issues for a range of agricultural and food products. Working with state and territory authorities, the department reviewed the government procurement chapter as requested at US–Australia trade minister talks in October 2009.

ASEAN–Australia–New Zealand FTA (AANZFTA) Economic Cooperation

AANZFTA entered into force in January 2010. The agreement includes a separate chapter on economic cooperation and an associated five-year Economic Cooperation Work Program (ECWP), which supports ASEAN countries to implement their commitments and enhance business utilisation of the agreement. Examples of economic cooperation activities in 2010–11 included:

  • capacity-building and technical assistance in rules of origin
  • monitoring the use of tariff preferences
  • the two annex approach to the scheduling of investment reservations
  • intellectual property crime and accession to the WIPO Madrid Protocol
  • international trade in services statistics
  • national qualification frameworks for higher education.

Activities are approved by a joint committee. A Support Unit in the ASEAN Secretariat manages implementation of projects which are funded by the AANZFTA Economic Cooperation Support Program. These activities involved participation by experts from international organisations such as WIPO, UNESCO, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific and the WTO.

Australia is contributing up to $20 million over five years to the ASEAN Economic Cooperation Support Program.

At the ASEAN–Australia Summit in Hanoi in October 2010, ASEAN leaders welcomed ‘Australia’s significant contribution to the AANZFTA Economic Cooperation Support Program’ and highlighted the ‘unprecedented capacity-building initiatives undertaken within the framework of an ASEAN–Plus FTA.’

The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) finalised its consideration of the department’s proposed change to the AUSFTA to amend the Rules of Origin for certain clothing yarns traded with the US in May 2011. Through its domestic processes, the US has agreed to this amendment. Following JSCOT’s recommendation that binding treaty action be taken, the department will work with domestic and US authorities on this amendment, which will benefit businesses in both countries (see Americas 1.1.3).

The department continues to oversee implementation of the Australia–Chile FTA (ACl–FTA) which entered into force in March 2009. Australian and Chilean officials convened the agreement’s Joint FTA Committee and Cooperation Committee for the first time, in May 2011 in Santiago. The meetings noted the successful functioning of the agreement and established an operational framework for future consultations.

The department led the delegation to the Second Thailand–Australia Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA) Joint Commission in Canberra in February 2011, which agreed on a work program to address implementation issues and market access for Australian exports, and scope possibilities for further negotiations provided for in the FTA
(see South-East Asia 1.1.2).

In 2010–11 the department consulted industry on the need to commence a third review of the Singapore–Australia FTA (SAFTA) and coordinated formal domestic treaty processes for amendments arising from the second Ministerial Review of the SAFTA in 2009
(see South-East Asia 1.1.2).

To liberalise trans-Tasman investment and enhance investor certainty, the department supported negotiations that finalised an investment protocol under the Australia New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (ANZCERTA). The Prime Ministers of Australia and New Zealand signed the protocol in February 2011. Once in force, it will liberalise trans-Tasman investments and enhance investor certainty to ensure it remains a cutting edge free trade agreement. The department played a major role in implementing the outcomes of the 2008–2010 review of the ANZCERTA Rules of Origin. The department supported processes to amend Article 3 (Rules of Origin) of ANZCERTA which, when complete, will simplify the rules and make them more consistent with Australia and New Zealand’s other free trade agreements (see Pacific 1.1.6).

Outlook

It is clear from recent ministerial meetings and negotiations in Geneva that the Doha Round has stalled and negotiations will not be concluded in 2011. However it is also apparent from ministerial meetings, including the meeting Dr Emerson hosted in Paris in May 2011, that Members remain committed to the Round. The department will continue to do everything possible to sustain and advance the process of multilateral trade reform and liberalisation, with the conclusion of the Doha Development Round a central component. Working with other Government agencies and WTO Members, the department will continue to support the institution of the WTO and the many important functions it carries out in oversight of the global trading system, including its role in resisting protectionist tendencies and promoting open markets.

The department will continue negotiations across the FTA agenda. It will seek to conclude the Korea–Australia FTA, advance negotiations with China and Japan for high quality agreements and continue to identify opportunities to take forward FTA negotiations with the GCC. Bilateral FTA negotiations with Malaysia will intensify in 2011–12 while Indonesia–CEPA negotiations will commence, following AANZFTA entering into force for Indonesia. The department will start negotiations with India and undertake associated domestic consultations. We will work with other TPP parties to reach broad outlines of an agreement by the November 2011 APEC Leaders Meeting, with an intensive schedule of meetings planned for the rest of 2011. The department will seek to advance the PACER Plus negotiations with Pacific Islands Forum members.

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