Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb will participate in ministerial talks in Hawaii from 28-31 July with the aim of concluding negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP).
The TPP would be the world’s largest regional free trade agreement with the 12 countries involved accounting for around 40 per cent of the global economy and comprising more than 800 million people.
Mr Robb said one-third of Australia’s total trade in goods and services is with the 11 countries negotiating the TPP with total two-way trade worth around $223 billion while five out of the 11 are in the top 10 destinations for Australian investment.
“The TPP has transformational promise and would put in place the architecture for a more seamless trading environment between member countries which will bring significant new benefits for Australia,” he said.
“The negotiations are at a very advanced stage and we are pushing hard to ensure we can secure major gains and opportunities for Australian business and for our economy.”
The TPP will cover the traditional areas of trade, including market access for a wide-range of goods and services as well as investment and it will also address a number of 21st century trade and investment issues, such as competition, e-commerce, and anti-corruption.
The TPP also seeks to level the playing field between private business and state owned enterprises operating in the realm of commercial activities.
In traditional areas the government is working hard to deliver commercially meaningful outcomes for Australian agricultural exports such as beef, dairy, grains, sugar, horticulture, seafood and wine, as well as securing gains for our resources and energy exports, manufactured and other goods.
There will also be longer term integration benefits to Australian businesses and consumers by facilitating the better access to increasingly important global value chains.
“The TPP will help drive increased trade and investment; help secure the ongoing competitiveness of Australian businesses and make a significant contribution to supporting economic growth, job creation and higher living standards for Australians,” Mr Robb said.
The TPP is being negotiated between Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. Other countries will also be welcome to seek TPP membership in the future.