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Which ever way GATT goes: tough fair trade strategy needed



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M E D I A R E L E A S E

0 ?6&c£&i “ M.P.

LEADER OF THE NATIONAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA SHADOW MINISTER FOR ENERGY AND RESOURCES MEMBER FOR FARRER

Enquiries Parliament House Canberra, A.C.T. 2600. Phone (06) 277 4058 Fax (06) 277 2052

WHICH EVER WAY GATT GOES; TOUGH FAIR TRADE STRATEGY NEEDED.

Commenting on the eleventh hour breakdown in key trade talks in Brussels between the United States and EC, Federal Leader of the National Party, Tim Fischer said enough is enough.

"This further twist in trade negotiations is a bitter pill for Australia", Mr Fischer said.

"However, Australia must now move, regardless of the Uruguay Round stalemate and must fight back with its own tough fair trade strategy.

" We now need a two pronged approach here in Australia.

"Firstly, pursuit of liberal trading arrangements to help bring about greater bi-lateral breakthroughs and regional trade liberalisations. We will seek to obtain trading agreements between Australia and Asian countries, based on a security of

supply and a security of investment niche marketing as Andrew Peacock MP has pointed out.

"Secondly, Australia must pursue a tough fair trade strategy within principles of GATT which would embrace the following:

* Absolutely adequate anti-dumping laws. The Coalition has prepared amendments to produce tougher and fair anti-dumping laws.

* Completion of comprehensive labelling requirements so that Canadian pork coming into Australia, and the like, must be clearly labelled Canadian pork.

* Comprehensive revamping of the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service (AQIS) to include a credential system and lower cost structures for Australian exporters.

* Expansion of the National Food Authority role to

ensure imported food must equate with the standards required for Australian food and general inspection of imported food is totally adequate."

Mr Fischer added that for six years now, protracted negotiations had continued with the Uruguay Round; one could be forgiven for thinking some of the international negotiators are more

interested in making the process of negotiation permanent with all its five star hotel attractions rather than ripping apart the grandstanding, especially by France, to secure the achievable agreement which would greatly help all farmers in the world in the long run.

23 October 1992