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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 113

(Question No. 3996)


Mr Braithwaite asked the Minister for Trade, upon notice, on 20 May 1986:

(1) What is the Government's assessment of international commodity agreements.

(2) To which international commodity agreements does Australia belong.

(3) To which international commodity agreements does Australia not belong; and why.


Mr Dawkins —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) International commodity agreements can provide a useful forum for exchange of information and discussion between producers and consumers of problems in international commodity trade. International commodity agreements which contain economic provisions may provide the additional benefit of a better outcome in terms of export prices and market stability than would otherwise be the case. This, however, will depend very much on the conditions governing international trade in each particular commodity.

(2)-

GATT International Dairy Arrangement

GATT Arrangement Regarding Bovine Meat

International Coffee Agreement

International Jute Agreement

International Natural Rubber Agreement

International Wheat Agreement

International Sugar Agreement

International Tin Agreement

(3) International Cocoa Agreement

Australia is not a member because of the questionable effectiveness of the Agreement resulting from non-participation by the largest exporter (the Ivory Coast) and the largest importer (the USA).

International Olive Oil Agreement.

Australia is not a member because Australia is neither a significant consumer nor producer of olive oil.

International Agreement on Tropical Timber.

Membership of this agreement is presently under consideration by the Government.