About the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement
Australia's former Minister for Trade, Craig Emerson, and Malaysia’s Minister for International Trade and Industry, Mustapa Mohamed, signed the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) in Kuala Lumpur on 22 May 2012. The Agreement entered into force on 1 January 2013.
MAFTA is a comprehensive, high-quality agreement that further integrates the Australian economy into the fast-growing Asian region. The Agreement builds on benefits already flowing to the Australian economy from the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement, which started for Australia and Malaysia in 2010.
Malaysia is Australia’s 9th largest trading partner, with two-way trade worth $18.2 billion in the 2013 calendar year. The Agreement opens avenues for Australian goods and services into the dynamic Malaysian market.
MAFTA is an important part of the network of Free Trade Agreements in this region that Australia is pursuing to advance our trade interests in the Asian Century.
To assist business, a schedule is now available showing Malaysia's implementation of its MAFTA tariff commitments in the latest version of the Harmonized System, HS 2012.
For more information see Annex 1 under the Official Documents Tab
The Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) entered into force on 1 January 2013.
Media release: Free Trade Agreement with Malaysia in Force. 1 January 2013
Australia and Malaysia exchanged written confirmation that each had completed its domestic procedures to allow MAFTA to enter into force on 1 January 2013.
The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) released its report on the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement on 31 October 2012. JSCOT Report 130 recommended that binding treaty action be taken.
The text of the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) was tabled in Parliament on August 14 2012. It is now being considered by the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) in accordance with Australia's domestic approval processes. JSCOT has called for interested parties and organisations to make submissions on MAFTA. For more information see the JSCOT website.
Former Minister for Trade, Craig Emerson, and Malaysia’s Minister for Trade and Industry, Mustapa Mohamed, signed the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) in Kuala Lumpur on 22 May 2012.
MAFTA negotiations were finalised on 30 March 2012, consistent with a commitment by former Prime Minister Gillard and Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib to conclude within 12 months of their March 2011 meeting in Canberra.
Keynote Address by former Minister Emerson to the Australia Malaysia Business Council and the Malaysia Australia Business Council, 30 January 2012.
During a joint press conference with Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib in Canberra, former Prime Minister Gillard committed to finalising the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement.
Transcript of joint press conference with Prime Minister Najib, Canberra, 3 March 2011.
Here you can locate the full text of the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement and many other associated official documents.
The MAFTA package signed on 22 May 2012 consists of:
Malaysia's MAFTA schedule of tariff commitments was finalised using the tariff classification format known as HS 2007, and the tariff schedule annexed to the Agreement is in this format. The Product Specific Rules annexed to the Agreement also use the HS 2007 format. However, both Australia and Malaysia now make use of the updated tariff classification format known as HS 2012 and MAFTA has been implemented by the two Parties using this updated format. Malaysia's MAFTA tariff schedule, and the Product Specific Rules, have therefore been converted by the Parties into the HS 2012 format and are included on this page to assist business in making use of the Agreement (along with the HS 2007 versions attached to the Agreement). As Australia's tariff schedule binds tariffs on all products at tariff-free treatment from entry-into-force of the Agreement, it does not need to make use of the above tariff classification formats to record commitments.
Text of the Agreement
Chapters 1 to 21 of the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement
Annex 1 — Tariff Schedules (HS 2012)
Annex 2 — Product Specific Rules (HS 2012)
Annex 3 — Schedules of Specific Services Commitments
Annex 4 — Schedules of Movement of Natural Persons Commitments
Implementing Arrangement for Economic Cooperation
Economic and Technical Cooperation Implementing Arrangement
Non-Legally Binding Exchange of Letters
Guide to the agreement
The Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) will benefit Australian exporters, importers and consumers by opening markets and freeing trade and investment between our two countries.
The Agreement builds on the commitments made by both countries in Australia's regional Free Trade Agreement with ASEAN and New Zealand (AANZFTA).
Guides by sector
Chapter summaries - an introduction to the text of the agreement
For more information on doing business in Malaysia and about specific export opportunities, see the Austrade website. As well as country-specific information, the Austrade website also has a database that can be searched by industry.
Malaysia is a member of ASEAN and party to the Agreement Establishing the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area (AANZFTA).
Government response to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties Report 130
Government response to JSCOT 130 tabled on 17 July 2014
Joint Standing Committee on Treaties Report 130
JSCOT Report 130 tabled on 31 October 2012
MAFTA National Interest Analysis
National Interest Analysis and Consultation on the Malaysia Free Trade Agreement
MAFTA Regulation Impact Statement
The MAFTA Regulation Impact Statement, as provided to the Office of Best Practice and Regulation
Australian Scoping Study: An Australia-Malaysia FTA
In July 2004, Australia and Malaysia agreed to conduct parallel scoping studies of a free trade agreement (FTA). These studies were to provide a basis for the two governments to decide whether to proceed to negotiations.
The study below was Australia's contribution to the parallel scoping studies. Its main focus was the impact of a free trade agreement on Australia. The study found solid and worthwhile economic benefits for Australia from entering into a free trade agreement with Malaysia.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade invited submissions from individuals or groups on issues relevant to the negotiation of an FTA with Malaysia.
All submissions have been made publicly available on the DFAT website unless the author specified that all or part of the submission should not be made available to the public.
Where organisations have not provided permission for their submissions to be publicly released, these submissions have been omitted from the list below and are not available to the public.
Copyright and content
Copyright in submissions resides with the author(s), not with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The views expressed in these submissions are the views of the author(s) and should not be understood as reflecting the views of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Submissions were provided to us in a range of formats but submissions have been published as PDF files. Free programs are available to read PDFs.
Public submissions to the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement Negotiations
Public submissions to the Australian Scoping Study (as received by sector):
Agriculture, fishing and processed food
Manufacturing and mining
Unions, NGOs and others
States and territory governments