Australia China to Sign Free Trade Agreement……Globalism Marches On

Posted: November 16, 2014 in Free Trade


Prime Minister of Australia Tony Abbott welcomes President of China Xi Jinping to the G-20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith)
A free trade agreement reportedly worth $18 billion over a decade is set to be signed by Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Source: AAP
17 Nov 2014 – 3:12 AM  UPDATED 1 HOUR AGO

A multibillion dollar free trade agreement with China is a game changer that the Abbott government believes will supercharge the Australian economy.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to sign the deal after Mr Xi addresses the federal parliament on Monday afternoon.

Under the deal worth at least $18 billion, 85 per cent of all Australian exports will enter China tariff-free, News Corp Australia reports.

This is expected to rise to 93 per cent within four years and 95 per cent when the deal is fully in force in more than a decade.

Australian manufacturers, farmers, miners and the service sector including finance and tourism industries are believed to be among the biggest winners.

Beef and dairy producers are set to benefit from a phase-down in Chinese tariffs, with dairy exports moving to a similar tariff reduction schedule as New Zealand, News Corp reports.

Parliamentary Secretary Josh Frydenberg says the deal is a once in a generation outcome.

“I think this is a game changer,” he told ABC radio.

China is Australia’s number one trading partner, with the two-way flow of goods and services exceeding $150 billion last year. Trade between the countries was worth just a quarter of that amount a decade ago.

Mr Frydenberg said the sky was the limit on how high trade with China could climb.

“It will supercharge our trade with China,” he said.

Mr Abbott said the deal will go before a parliamentary treaties committee and some aspects will require legislation to be passed.

“This is better for Australian agriculture,” he told Macquarie Radio.

“It’s at least as good for our agriculture as New Zealand got about six or seven years ago.”

There are reports the deal will allow some Chinese-owned projects to bring in Chinese workers with strict conditions.

ACTU President Ged Kearney is worried the deal could spell disaster for Australians’ job security.

“The last thing we need is for our government to trade away our jobs and our kids’ future,” she told AAP.

Chinese workers were already being brought in for projects in African and Pacific Island countries.

The federal government didn’t give a “hoot” about safeguards on labour mobility, she said.

“The benefits of free trade agreements are overblown and they never deliver,” Ms Kearney said.

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce wouldn’t reveal details of the free trade agreement on Monday morning, but was confident it would be “extremely well received”.

The FTA would boost the export of agricultural products, which he said would counter the downturn in mining commodities.

“If we can alleviate that in some way by exports in dairy and exports of beef and exports of wine, horticultural produce, fish, then that is a good outcome for us,” Mr Joyce told ABC radio.


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