The Conversation, May 20, David Collins
When Australia and the UK began discussing a free trade agreement in 2020, they issued a joint statement with remarkably similar objectives. It now seems that a meeting of minds is imminent.
The countries’ shared language, history and similar legal systems mean a deal should be relatively easy to finalise. It will also be highly significant, seen by the UK as a key step towards accession to the influential Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership, a group of 11 Pacific Rim countries representing 13% of global GDP.
So far, selling the free trade agreement (FTA) to the British public has been fairly painless, with predictions of UK exports to Australia increasing by up to £900 million per year. The deal should also create welcome opportunities for British firms through improved access to fast growing Asian markets such as Vietnam and China.
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