DFAT is calling for submissions from individuals and groups on the reviews of the services and investment chapters of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement as well as the review of the associated Investment Facilitation Arrangement Memorandum of Understanding.
Submissions can focus on one or all of these reviews. Especially helpful would be information on specific barriers to investment and services trade faced by business in China, and priorities for any possible future negotiations.
The information stakeholders provide will assist the Government in determining Australia’s key priorities as we progress these reviews.
To assist preparations, submissions would be appreciated by 1 September, 2017. Written submissions may take a number of forms, from an email to a more comprehensive analytical paper. These should be forwarded to chinaFTA@dfat.gov.au.
ChAFTA already supports increased services trade and investment flows by providing improved access and increased regulatory certainty for Australian business. Following these reviews, the Australian Government will work with China to further reduce barriers to trade in services, agree on additional protections for investors and open up new commercial opportunities.
Both parties agreed to bring the investment review forward by one year, reflecting the priority both countries attach to enhancing two-way investment.
This agreement with China to commence the reviews builds upon the success of ChAFTA. After only one year, the benefits of ChAFTA are clear. For example, in 2016, bottled wine sales were up 38 per cent to $470 million, certain skin care products by 82 per cent, and the value of fresh lobster exports quadrupled.
Business is booming for those who have taken advantage of the preferential access the agreement offers. The results we are seeing are fantastic and they are only going to get better as many tariffs continue to fall, before almost all are eliminated altogether.