ECA

ECA welcomes launch of Peru-Australia FTA negotiations—while keeping our eye on the TPP prize

29.05.2017 Lisa McAuley
ECA welcomes launch of Peru-Australia FTA negotiations—while keeping our eye on the TPP prize

The Export Council of Australia (ECA) welcomes the launch of the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement (PAFTA), which the Australian Minster for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, announced today with Peru’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Trade and Tourism, Eduardo Ferreyros.

In its 2017 Trade Policy Recommendations, the ECA called on the government to seek new bilateral FTAs with Canada, Mexico and Peru—the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) parties with which Australia does not already have an FTA.

ECA CEO Lisa McAuley said “we are pleased the government has adopted our recommendation.”

“While Peru is not a major trading partner for Australia overall, it is South America’s fastest growing economy. It is very important for Australia in some niche sectors, such as mining and related equipment, technologies and services. There are also significant opportunities in Peru for some agricultural sectors.

“The potential benefits to two-way trade should far exceed the costs of negotiating an agreement, given negotiators can use the TPP as a template.

“PAFTA will help level the playing field for Australian business in Peru, where business from markets including Canada, the European Union, Japan, Mexico and the United States currently enjoy preferential treatment.

“While there is value in the Australian Government progressing a bilateral FTA with Peru, the main prize is still the TPP. Australia must continue to play a leading role in seeing the TPP come into force.

“The ECA is a strong advocate for Australian trade, and helping to build the capacity and capability of Australia businesses to take on the world.”

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