Trans-Pacific Partnership Free-Trade Agreement
Next month, on March 8, 11 countries will come together to sign one of the most significant free-trade agreements in global history – the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
It may go relatively unnoticed in today’s frenetic news cycle, but this is an historic achievement for our nation.
It reinforces this Government’s commitment to a strong, diverse economy. And, despite a barrage of pessimism from critics, we refused to let this opportunity die in the water when the United States withdrew its support.
Having spent the majority of my working life in the private sector, I’m acutely aware of what this agreement means for Australian families.
Australian businesses look to the Government for leadership, and it’s our responsibility to create a climate that allows those businesses to thrive.
For export giants like Western Australia, we need to help our industries access new markets and expand.
That’s how we create more jobs, strengthen the economy, and deliver higher wages for Australians.
For the mining industry, the most significant aspect of the TPP-11 is the reduction of regulatory risks for our service exporters.
In Kalgoorlie-Boulder, the gold mining capital of Western Australia, some of the local businesses are world leaders in mining technology and equipment.
Under the TPP, energy sector reforms in Mexico and Vietnam will help Kalgoorlie businesses be more competitive in those markets.
Our agricultural and pastoral industries throughout the Goldfields-Esperance region will reap the benefits of major reductions in tariffs for beef, sheep meat, and wool.
One of the most resounding endorsements of the TPP comes from the Peterson Institute for International Economics.
Their modelling indicates this agreement will boost Australia’s national income by 0.5 per cent and our exports by 4 per cent.
That’s more than $15 billion in additional income and more than $30 billion in additional exports.
We’ve seen the results of some of our other free trade agreements, particularly with China.
Over a nine-month period last year, trade growth was astounding when compared to data from the years before CHAFTA came into force.
For example, bottled wine exports grew 129 per cent to $498 million.
There’s no doubt free trade makes our economy stronger, and that’s why this Government is so committed to being a world leader in this space.