26 September 2023

Trade deal with UK under way

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The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has announced that negotiations for a free trade agreement (FTA) have been launched with the United Kingdom.

In a statement, DFAT said it welcomed submissions throughout the negotiations from interested individuals and groups on the potential opportunities and impacts of an FTA with the UK.

“Individuals, organisations and groups that make submissions are registered as stakeholders by DFAT for further consultation and follow up, as appropriate,” the Department said.

“Australia is seeking an ambitious and comprehensive FTA with the UK that drives increased trade in goods and services, two-way investment, economic growth and job creation,” it said.

“An FTA with the UK also signals our shared commitment to open markets, free trade and the rules-based global trading system.”

DFAT said that the UK was one of Australia’s most enduring partners.

“We have a shared commitment to the rule of law and to an open and rules-based international trading system. Our common heritage, values and strategic interests mean that we work closely together across a wide range of international issues,” it said.

“In 2018-19, two-way goods and services trade between Australia and the UK was valued at $30.3 billion, making the UK Australia’s seventh-largest trading partner.”

The Department said an FTA with the UK had the potential to deepen the trade and investment relationship for the benefit of Australian businesses and consumers.

“It will also provide an important signal of our shared commitment to global trade liberalisation, and will play an important role in our post-COVID-19 economic recovery,” it said.

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