Text released for historic trade pact


Media release from The Hon. Andrew Robb AO MP

Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb has welcomed today’s release of the negotiated text for the historic Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP).

Negotiations for the TPP were concluded last month in Atlanta. The agreement will establish a more seamless trade and investment environment across 12 countries representing around 40 per cent of global GDP. It will deliver substantial benefits for Australia in the rapidly growing Asia Pacific region, which includes a rising middle class.

Mr Robb said that at the end of the negotiations Australia and the 11 other countries agreed to release the full TPP text as soon as possible, and well in advance of its official signing.

“Today’s release honours that commitment and provides the Australian public with an opportunity to examine the text and more fully understand any areas of the negotiation that are of interest to them,” Mr Robb said.

A comprehensive range of outcomes documents, including fact sheets, were also made public immediately after the negotiations had been concluded. These outlined the broad benefits the TPP will bring to our businesses, farmers, manufacturers and world-class service providers. It will also facilitate greater Australian participation in increasingly important global value chains.

In addition to issues typically covered in free trade agreements, such as tariff elimination on goods and liberalisation of services trade, the TPP addresses contemporary issues including requiring state-owned enterprises to compete fairly with the private sector, facilitating the evolution of e-commerce, and imposing new disciplines to combat corruption.

Mr Robb said the TPP provided a pathway towards the long-term regional objective of a Free Trade Agreement of the Asia Pacific.

“Along with the landmark North Asian bilateral trade agreements we have concluded with China, Japan and South Korea, the TPP forms a transformational series of agreements that will contribute substantially to the diversification of our economy in this critical post mining boom phase. This will reduce our reliance on any one sector or any one market, regardless of how strong they are,” Mr Robb said.

It is important to note that the legal review and official translation of the TPP is still not finalised. In addition, a number of side letters have been concluded by Australia as part of the negotiations. As these side letters are finalised, they will be made available to the public.

Each country will follow its own domestic treaty-making process with regard to the TPP. For Australia, this means that before any binding treaty action is taken, the TPP text and National Interest Analysis will be tabled in Parliament for 20 joint sitting days. The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) will conduct an inquiry into the TPP and report back to Parliament.

For the TPP text and related documents, click here.

Trade and Investment Minister’s Office
0400 940 968 or 0437 971 721

DFAT Media
(02) 6261 155