China and Australia signed Free Trade Agreement

Jun 19, 2015 11:00 IST

China and Australia on 17 June 2015 signed the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) at Canberra in Australia.

The agreement was signed by China's Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng and Australia's Trade Minister Andrew Robb.

The ChAFTA will ensure 85 percent of all exports of Australia to China tariff-free that will rise to 93 percent by 2019.

Features of China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA)

• It gives Australian dairy farmers, wine-makers and other sectors tariff-free access to the huge market of China within a few years.
• It will put eventual removal of tariffs on dairy products, live animal exports, resources and energy products.
• Tariffs on all resources and energy products will be removed by 2017.

• Beef and sheep farmers will benefit from the abolition of tariffs ranging from 12-25 percent.
• Lock in zero tariffs on major exports like iron ore, gold, crude petroleum oil and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
• All tariffs on horticulture and live animal exports will be eliminated, while tariff on wine will be cut up to 14-30 percent.
• Wool producers will be able to export another 30000 tonnes of clean wool on top of existing quotas.
• Cotton, wheat, sugar, rice and oilseeds industries were kept out of the agreement.

Comment

The chAFTA will open up markets worth billions of dollars and create jobs for both the countries. With this agreement Australian farmers will enjoy the same benefits possessed by New Zealand, Chile and ASEAN competitors who have similar free trade agreements with China.

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