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China Australia Free Trade Agreement passes lower house

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22 October 2015


Federal Member for Hume Angus Taylor has welcomed the successful passage of the China Australia Free Trade Agreement implementation bill through the lower house.

“In 20 years’ time, we will look back at the China Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) as one of the most profound changes in this era of Australian history. Trade integration is the beginning of a much deeper integration with countries that will shape the world in coming years, and we absolutely must be part of it.”

“I welcome the fact that Labor has come to the party on this agreement, and I welcome the fact that we have had an open and sensible debate with them about appropriate safeguards.”

Recently appointed as Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties, Mr Taylor said central to ChAFTA was the ability to better control and market Australian product.

“We export $107 billion of product from Australia, much of which is taxed, and we import $52 billion, again much of which is taxed. Those exports have been growing at 19 per cent a year which is an absolutely astronomical number. Any delay to this agreement, as we know, would have been very expensive for those exporters. We are in the right place at the right time to get on with this.”

“I am very confident that, if we do the hard work necessary to knock down not just the tariff barriers, but the non-tariff barriers, the benefits will flow thick and fast - we are already seeing jobs and investment in anticipation of the growth of those markets.”

“I say to the sceptics; look at New Zealand where their dairy industry is selling five times more of its product than it was only a few short years ago. We have seen a transformation of the economy of the South Island of New Zealand, and of New Zealand, and right at the heart of that was a free trade agreement with China.”

Mr Taylor said the flow-on benefits of this agreement for primary producers and manufacturers in Hume would be enormous. The Bill will now move to the Senate for debate and approval.

Angus Taylor on ABC TV’s Capital Hill today on the passing of ChAFTA through the Lower House>>