Policy corner: Jason Clare, TPP11, Brexit and more

18.12.2018 Heath Baker

This edition of policy corner provides an update on the ECA members-only luncheon with Labor’s Shadow Minister for Trade, Jason Clare. It gives you advice to help you get ready for some big changes on the horizon: the TPP-11, a possible no-deal Brexit and changes to air cargo security requirements. Plus the launch of the government’s non-tariff barrier action plan and its proposed biosecurity levy.

Members-only luncheon with Jason Clare

On 11 December, the ECA held a members-only luncheon roundtable with Jason Clare, Labor’s Shadow Minister for Trade and Investment.

At the luncheon, Jason gave a great insight into how, if elected, Labor would work to maintain and build Australia’s free-trade consensus. He also spoke about some of Labor’s policies for growing exports, such as increasing Asia-literacy with businesses, addressing non-tariff measures and improving consultation around FTAs.

Members highlighted the issues that were front-of-mind for them, such as EMDG, the R&D Tax Concession, the complexities around export documentation and difficulties of obtaining visas (for both talent and inbound buyers).

A big thank you to HSBC for hosting the event.

TPP-11 goes live on 30 December

The TPP-11 finally enters into force on 30 December 2018 for Australia, Canada, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore.

There will be one round of tariff cuts on that day, then another on 1 January 2019 (for the countries listed above except Japan, which cuts its tariffs on 1 April 2019).

The ECA has released two members-only webinars: one to help you use FTAs (and in the case of multiple FTAs, which one to choose), and one overviewing the benefits of the TPP-11, including services and trade facilitation. If you are an ECA Member, simply login to the Member portal to watch these webinars. 

For goods exporters, it’s important to know that the TPP-11 allows self-certification, saving you time and money. DFAT has prepared a ‘sample’ certificate of origin, which complies with the TPP-11 certification data requirements.

Preparing for a no-deal Brexit

With little more than three months to go until the United Kingdom is set to leave the European Union, all options are still on the table: ranging from a no-deal (or ‘hard’) Brexit, to no Brexit at all.

Given the uncertainty, if you import or export to the UK and/or the Europan Union, start thinking about how a hard Brexit will affect you. For goods exporters particularly, think about how major delays at the UK border and additional supply chain costs will affect your businesses.

We recommend talking to your trading partners in the UK & EU about what they consider the implications to be, and what they are doing to prepare.

The UK Government has prepared this guidance for its businesses on the potential impact of a no-deal Brexit, and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise has provided this guidance. Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has provided additonal information.

Air cargo security

If you export goods via air cargo, be aware that security requirements will change from 1 March 2019. All air cargo, regardless of destination, wil need to be examined at piece-level or originate from a Known Consignor.

These changes could cause delays, increase costs and require your goods to be repacked.

Please talk to your air cargo freight and logistics providers about how they are preparing for these changes.

The Department of Home Affairs has written this letter to exporters.

Non-Tariff Barriers

The ECA is proud to be a member of the working group behind the Government’s recently-announced Non-Tariff Barrier Action Plan.

When Australian businesses confront a non-tariff barrier, the plan will make it easier for businesses to access the help they need, improve collaboration between government and industry, and increase transparency of processes and information  

Non-tariff barriers are 'red tape' or trade rules that unjustifiably restrict the flow of goods and services. Click here to find out more or report a non-tarriff barrier.

Biosecurity levy

The ECA is working with other industry associations in response to the Government’s planned Biosecurity levy. The levy will significantly increase the biosecurity charges on all imports into Australia—which, in turn, will increase the costs of production for exports.


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