The Albanese Government welcomes the release of the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) Report today which recommends the Australian Government take binding treaty action to bring the Australia-India Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (ECTA) into force.
India’s youthful population, economic demand and growth trajectory present unparalleled opportunities for Australian exporters. ECTA capitalises on this by delivering strong, immediate market access outcomes for Australia in goods and services and improved trade facilitation.
The Agreement will eliminate tariffs on over 90 per cent of Australian goods exports to India by value. India’s high tariffs on agriculture, such as sheepmeat, wool, cotton, seafood, macadamia nuts and avocados will be removed, with the vast majority, or 85 per cent, eliminated from the day ECTA enters into force.
India will also substantially reduce its 150 per cent tariff on bottled wine above $US5 and has guaranteed to extend to Australia any deeper access provided to future free trade agreement partners.
The Agreement presents enormous opportunity for Australian services companies and professionals accessing the Indian market. India has guaranteed Australian services suppliers in thirty-one sectors and subsectors the best treatment afforded to its future trade agreement partners, benefitting suppliers of higher and adult education, business services, research and development, communications, construction and engineering services, insurance, banking, health services and hospitals, audio-visual, tourism and travel.
Australia and India’s strong people-to-people links will be strengthened through ECTA. New mobility outcomes will support trade and business and contribute to cultural exchange. India’s mobility commitments to Australia are consistent with the best of its existing free trade agreements.
Like Australia’s Free Trade Agreement with the UK, the Government expects broad support on legislation to implement the Agreement when it is considered by Parliament next week.
ECTA will enter into force 30 days after both countries have confirmed with each other in writing that they have completed their respective domestic requirements.
The JSCOT report on ECTA can be found here.
Minister for Trade and Tourism, Senator the Hon Don Farrell said that closer economic ties with India are a critical component of the Government’s trade diversification strategy.
“The quality of this Agreement, in terms of market access and opportunity for Australian businesses, demonstrates India’s commitment to our bilateral economic partnership.”
“India presents unparalleled growth opportunities for Australian business across a range of sectors, from food and agriculture, technology and green energy, to health and education services.”
“I have had a number of positive meetings with my counterpart, Minister of Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Textiles Shri Piyush Goyal, and continue to engage with him, providing updates on our progress and the expectation we will both be in a position to implement the agreement before the end of the year.”
“This agreement is India’s first free trade agreement with a major developed country in over ten years and provides Australian exporters a valuable advantage in the world’s fastest growing large economy”, said Minister Farrell.