Trade Talk 9 November 2017

APEC Economic Leaders Week, 5-11 November

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo are attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Meetings in Da Nang, Vietnam this week, supporting APEC’s core principles, which include the pursuit of free and open, rules-based trade. The 21 APEC economies account for 47.5 per cent of the world’s trade in goods and services and 60 per cent of world GDP. Of Australia’s top 15 trade partners, 12 are APEC economies, and 60 per cent of our services trade is with APEC.

Prime Minister’s speech on trade to Asia-Pacific Conference

“The improvement and extension of the liberal rules-based system to almost all corners of the Indo-Pacific has generated the greatest burst of economic growth, innovation and human advancement the world has ever seen,” Prime Minister Turnbull said in his keynote address to the 2017 Asia-Pacific Regional Conference in Perth last weekend. The Prime Minister also said Australia's economic opportunities in the Indo-Pacific are creating new possibilities for our partnerships with Europe, with Australia as a ‘gateway’ to Asia, illustrating why Australia and the European Union have agreed to commence free trade negotiations early next year.

German President calls on business to spread open trade message

Trade agreements that defend the principles of free trade and protect our social and labour standards are “more than a path to economic growth and prosperity, they can also contribute to a more inclusive, a more peaceful path of globalisation,” German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in his speech at the Asia-Pacific Regional Conference. President Steinmeier added that while free and fair trade cannot guarantee peace and prosperity, it can bring people together across borders and counteract nationalism, because open trade makes us understand how much we need each other. He called on the business community to remain a strong ally in spreading this message.


Peru FTA close to finalisation

Minister Ciobo has announced he expects negotiations on the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement (PAFTA) to conclude this week during meetings alongside the APEC meeting in Vietnam. “PAFTA will create new opportunities for Australian exporters and send an important message to the world that Australia embraces trade because it underpins our economic success, creates new jobs and drives growth,” the Minister said. PAFTA will enable Australian businesses to access the opportunities presented by Peru, which has been one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America, and the world, over the last decade.

Another surplus in monthly data for exports and imports

Container ship

In seasonally adjusted terms, Australia recorded a monthly surplus of exports over imports of $1,745 million in September. The increase of $872 million is almost double the surplus in August. Australia has now recorded 11 consecutive monthly trade surpluses since October last year.

Report finds trade supports one in five Australian jobs

The benefits of thirty years of trade liberalisation in Australia include higher incomes and more job opportunities, according to a Centre for International Economics research report. The report outlines how high tariffs and trade barriers would result in job losses, cuts in household consumption and lower Australian living standards.

Opportunities beckon for Australian exporters

The increasing popularity of non-Mexican foods and a rising middle class more willing and able to travel abroad present opportunities for Australian agricultural and tourism exports to Mexico, Efic’s latest ‘World Risk Developments’ reports.


Changes to exporter declaration requirements for exports of dairy products to the EU

In an effort to streamline the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources’ internal processes and ensure that there are no delays in assessing export permit applications, changes have been made to the mandatory exporter declaration requirements for all dairy products exported to the EU.

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The case for a strong and flexible economy in a time of international uncertainty

Treasury Secretary John Fraser outlined the need for Australia to optimise the benefits of trade and international investment in a recent contribution to DFAT’s blog. Australia’s economic fortunes are inextricably linked to its ability to optimise the benefits of trade and international investment and, in turn, continued prosperity underpins its capacity to preserve its sovereignty and sustained security.


70th anniversary of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

Devised as a temporary agreement that would boost international trade, the GATT regulated world trade for almost 50 years before the WTO came into being in 1995. The 1947 press release on the signing pointed to a general recognition towards the end of the inter-war period that restrictive trade barriers were largely responsible for the decline in world trade and would need to be countered in order for trade to recover.


Did You Know? In 2016, real wages were 7.4 per cent higher and prices for goods were 3.4 per cent lower than they would have been without thirty years of trade liberalisation.

Upcoming Trade Events

Free Trade Agreements Information Seminars

Dalby, QLD, 13 November; Roma, QLD, 14 November; Tamworth, NSW, 15 November; Rockhampton, QLD, 16 November; Dubbo, NSW, 16 November; Emerald, QLD, 17 November; Parkes, NSW, 17 November; Cairns, QLD, 21 November; Sale, VIC, 24 November 2017

Find out about how you can take advantage of Australia’s North Asia Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with China (ChAFTA), Japan (JAEPA) and Korea (KAFTA). Events are free of charge and run by experts from Austrade, DFAT and other relevant agencies. See the website below for further listings of North Asia Free Trade Agreements tailored training sessions.


Business Beyond Borders

Canning Vale, WA, 15 November 2017

This Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia and City of Canning event will provide practical advice on how to expand your business to reach new consumers in China, Japan and Korea. Topics covered include what is an FTA, how to identify preferential market access, and how FTAs can assist with international business ventures, including attracting international investment.


Trade with the world’s third largest economy

Brisbane, QLD, 15 November

Join the Queensland Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland at this event to receive specific advice on access to Japan, the world’s third-largest economy, and how Australian exporters can benefit from the recent Japan Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA).


Tourism Australia Industry Briefing

Canberra, ACT, 17 November 2017

Tourism Australia’s free industry briefings involve senior executives from Tourism Australia and State Tourism executives providing an update on current and future activity and sharing research and insights from key international markets.


Last Updated: 27 November 2017