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13 July 2018

Australia's trade reaches new high

Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo announced this week that Australia’s total trade in goods and services reached a record $763.2 billion in 2017, up 11 per cent from 2016. More information on Australian trade, including authoritative statistics on Australia’s merchandise exports and imports, can be found in the newly released Composition of Trade Australia 2017, now available on DFAT’s website.

Media Release

Australia wins WTO tobacco plain packaging dispute

Minister Ciobo has welcomed Australia’s resounding victory in the World Trade Organization (WTO) tobacco plain packaging dispute. The WTO rejected all claims brought by Honduras, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia and Cuba that Australia's measure is inconsistent with WTO rules. The WTO ruling confirmed Australia's tobacco plain packaging measure is making a meaningful contribution to improving public health.

Media Release

Australia’s WTO Government Procurement Agreement accession

Australia received support to join the World Trade Organization Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) last month, after almost three years of negotiations. The GPA is a significant international trade agreement that will open the door for Australian businesses to government procurement markets estimated to be worth more than US$1.7 trillion.

Media Release

Trade, Tourism and Investment Minister’s address on Japan-Australia trade

Minister Ciobo spoke on 2 July at an ANZ Chamber of Commerce event in Tokyo about the ongoing strength of the bilateral relationship. Japan has stood side-by-side with Australia as a frontline advocate for trade liberalisation, leading to the successful conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.


Why is Australia so keen on Free Trade Agreements?

Michael Dean, Director of FTA Outreach at DFAT, has highlighted the ongoing importance of free trade to Australia’s prosperity. Australia’s average household income in 2016 was more than $8,000 higher than it would have been, if not for three decades of trade liberalisation by successive Australian governments.

Blog Post

Why the World Cup is a bit like international trade

Most countries get a chance to participate in the World Cup, just as most can participate in international trade. The vast majority of countries import and export something, be it natural resources, agricultural goods, manufactures, or services. However, how far countries go with either international football or trade really depends on a combination of luck and policy.

World Economic Forum

Photo of Soccer Ball in Net

Remarks on WTO Reform by DDG Wolff

Speaking at an event in Geneva on 6 July, WTO Deputy Director-General Alan Wolff said greater investment was needed from WTO members, business, and non-governmental organisations to craft a better multilateral trading system. While the system is presently under severe stress, past experience has shown that a “crisis can bring good results,” DDG Wolff said.


Trade is not just about tariffs

Amid the clamour of the current shouting-match about tariffs, two sometimes-forgotten facts in international trade should be noted. First, tariffs are not the only distortion. Second, none of the countries involved in the current battles is without sin when it comes to trade restrictions.

Lowy Institute

Wine Australia to invest $67.8m in ambitious agenda for the year ahead

With the support of the Australian Government’s $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package, Wine Australia will invest $67.8 million in the coming financial year to ensure the industry is globally competitive. During the 12 months to May 2018, Wine Australia processed a record 56,912 export approvals.

Media Release

Photo of Kangaroos in Winery

Who do the US and China have trade disputes with?

Trade disputes are nothing new for these two economic superpowers, and they are not confined to targeting each other. In total, China and the US have more than 300 disputes with different countries and trading blocs.

World Economic Forum

NSW startups take their products global

Minister Ciobo has announced that Seven NSW startups will learn from global innovation experts in Tel Aviv, as part of a joint program hosted in one of the world’s most advanced innovation hubs. The Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning startups will attend an intensive, 10-day program at Austrade’s Israel Landing Pad from 9-19 July.

Media Release

Did You Know?

The Australian Government had an embargo on iron ore exports between 1938 to 1960, partly because of concerns the mineral was in short supply. In 2017 Australian exports of iron ore were worth over $63 billion.

Upcoming Trade Events

Victorian Small Business Festival 2018

Metropolitan and Regional, VIC, 1-31 August 2018

The Victorian Small Business Festival is an annual curated events program across metropolitan and regional Victoria, providing ideas, information and networking opportunities to start, operate and grow a business. The Festival offers a wide range of practical, interactive and innovative events that cover topics such as business planning, marketing, social media, networking and financial management.


Thailand – Taking Off to New Heights

Perth, WA, 17 July

Thailand Board of Investment, Sydney Office in collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA invites you to attend the Thailand Taking off to New Heights Seminar. With continued above trend economic growth throughout ASEAN and rising per capita incomes, now is the perfect time for Australian business to grow and expand in Thailand.


Food & Beverage Trade Week

Melbourne, VIC, 11-13 September

Food and Beverage Trade Week is Australia’s premier invitation-only international food trade event that connects local Victorian producers to global business and industry. If you're looking for new international connections, want to strengthen your existing relationships, or trial a new product for feedback, then this is the event for you.


Free Trade Agreements Information Seminar – Melbourne

Melbourne, VIC, 30 July

This seminar is an interactive session where you’ll have the opportunity to hear directly from Government and Industry experts on the practical benefits of exporting and taking advantage of Australia’s Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).


Free Trade Agreements Information Seminars – Burnie & Launceston

Burnie & Launceston, TAS, 31 July

These seminars are interactive sessions where you’ll have the opportunity to hear directly from Government and Industry experts on the practical benefits of exporting and taking advantage of Australia’s Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).


Free Trade Agreements Information Seminars – Toowoomba & Sunshine Coast

Toowoomba & Maroochydore, QLD, 7 and 8 August

These seminars are interactive sessions where you’ll have the opportunity to hear directly from Government and Industry experts on the practical benefits of exporting and taking advantage of Australia’s Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).


Visit the DFAT trade website for more on Australian trade, including FTA updates, the latest trade statistics and the Trade Talk archives.

Trade Articles sourced from non-Australian Government sources do not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government.

Last Updated: 15 June 2018

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