Australians are set to cash in on a post-Brexit deal as Scott Morrison moves to finalise a promising agreement with Boris Johnson by the end of the year.
With the UK agreement to finally leave the European Union is passed by its parliament on Friday, Australia looks set to secure a free trade deal by December.
And Australia’s wine industry looks likely be the biggest winner once the deal is signed, along with other exporters, as the government is hoping to finalise a deal with low or no tariffs and no quotas.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison (pictured) will move to finalise a trade deal with Boris Johnson by the end of the year
Australia’s wine industry looks likely be the biggest winner once the deal is signed, along with other exporters, as the government is hoping to finalise a deal with low or no tariffs and no quotas
Australia was a casualty of the UK’s entry into the European Economic Community, with beef and sheep exports dropping significantly.
Despite it being unlikely for any new deals to result in Australia returning to one of Britain’s top suppliers, it would result in better numbers for primary producers, former trade minister Andrew Robb told The Australian.
‘The UK won’t return to being our third-largest trading partner but we should aspire for it to re-enter the top 10,’ he said.
By removing tariffs, quotas and non-tariff barriers more options will be created – which can only be a good thing for Australia, Mr Robb said.
Economists are predicting the wine industry to be the biggest winner, with demand already high despite the current traffics in place, which European wines don’t have.
‘The success of Australian wine sales to the UK, where one in five bottles sold is Australian wine, demonstrates that there remains a hunger in the UK market for safe, high quality Australian produce,’ Mr Robb said.
A team of EU officials will meet their Australian counterparts in Canberra from February 10 to 14 for the sixth round of negotiations towards the EU-Australia free trade agreement (pictured: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson)
CommSec’s Craig James told AAP the end of uncertainty over Brexit would allow business to start spending, investing and hiring again.
There was speculation the deal would give Australians the right to live and work in the UK longer-term without a visa, like they do when travelling to New Zealand, however, Australian Trade Minister Simon Birmingham said that was unlikely.
It is understood there is a chance the Youth Mobility visa may be tweaked to allow people under 30 two stints in the UK, meaning person could live in London in their earlier 20s and work in a pub then go back as a professional later.
With the UK agreement to finally leave the European Union is passed by its parliament on Friday, Australia looks set to secure a free trade agreement by December (pictured: Trade Secretary Liz Truss during visit to Sydney last year)
However, University of South Australia researcher Professor Jimmy Donaghey said Australia was unlikely to reap big benefits from Brexit.
‘The geographic distance between the two countries has always been a restriction on trade, but essentially Australia’s biggest export earners, things like coal and iron ore, are not in demand by the UK,’ he said.
Trade Minister Simon Birmingham wants the deal concluded this year and believes the UK has a similar aim.
A team of EU officials will meet their Australian counterparts in Canberra from February 10 to 14 for the sixth round of negotiations towards the EU-Australia free trade agreement.
Australia is party to 11 free trade deals that eliminate import tariffs between trading partners.
Bilateral arrangements have been signed with New Zealand (1983), Singapore (2003), the US (2005), Thailand (2005), Chile (2009), Malaysia (2013), South Korea (2014), Japan (2015) and China (2015).
Separate multilateral arrangements were made with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 2010 and the Trans-Pacific Partnership in 2018.