Trade Update – 23rd November 2022: APEC CALLS FOR DIGITAL ACTION, AUSTRALIAN COMMITTEE BACKS TRADE AGREEMENTS, CHINA SEEKS TO SPEED-UP KOREAN TALKS and many more…
Weekly trade review provided by Chatto Creek Advisory Pty.
Chatto Creek Advisory Pty Ltd is a Melbourne-based strategic consultancy specialising in trade policy advice and government engagement strategy. It is headed by Russell Scoular, an executive with rich government relations, trade policy, and business experience throughout the Asia Pacific.
APEC CALLS FOR DIGITAL ACTION: APEC leaders have called for more cutting-edge and comprehensive cooperation initiatives in the digital economy. Following the Bangkok Summit, they said they would deepen cooperation to bridge digital divides and accelerate the implementation of the APEC digital roadmap.
AUSTRALIAN COMMITTEE BACKS TRADE AGREEMENTS: Parliament’s Joint Treaties Committee has supported the ratification of both the Australia-United Kingdom FTA and the initial Australia-India Economic Cooperation & Trade Agreement. Legislation to enact the bilateral FTAs is expected this week.
CHINA SEEKS TO SPEED-UP KOREAN TALKS: President Xi Jinping told South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol during the week they needed to accelerate negotiations to upgrade their bilateral FTA. The FTA was signed in 2015 after three years of negotiations. China and ASEAN have also agreed to upgrade their FTA.
TAIWAN BOOSTS TAX BREAKS FOR KEY INDUSTRIES: Cabinet has approved draft legislation to provide bigger tax deductions for key export industries. They will apply to equipment purchases and R&D expenditure. The breaks will be available to the semiconductor, 5G, electric vehicle and satellite sectors.
PACIFIC ISLAND MINISTERS CALL FOR ACTION: Pacific Islands ministers met in Fiji during the week and called for the early implementation of the fisheries subsidy agreement and a second wave of negotiations. With WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, they also renewed a technical cooperation agreement.
THAILAND & JAPAN SIGN FIVE-YEAR AGREEMENT: Thailand and Japan signed a five-year economic action plan during the week. The plan will function under the umbrella of the Japan-Thailand Strategic Economic Partnership and will focus on human resource development, circular economy and infrastructure.
AUSTRALIA & EUROPE TO PRIORITIZE TALKS: Prime Minister Albanese and European leaders Michel and von der Leyen met at the G20 in Bali where they agreed to prioritize an ambitious and comprehensive trade agreement. They also agreed the agreement should embrace cutting-edge environmental standards.
APEC NAMES NEW POLICY LEADER: APEC has appointed Carlos Kuriyama, Peru’s former chief trade negotiator, to lead the APEC Policy Support Unit. He will begin a three-year term in January and will succeed Dr Denis Hew. The Unit is attached to the APEC Secretariat and was established in 2007.
SINGAPORE & BANGLADESH SIGN COOPERATION AGREEMENT: Singapore and Bangladesh signed a trade and investment cooperation agreement during the week. The agreement seeks to deepen economic relations between the two economies and is viewed as a step toward a free trade agreement.
AUSTRALIA REJECTS DISPUTE MECHANISM: Trade Minister Farrell has announced Australia will not include investor-state dispute clauses in new trade agreements. In a speech to The Australian APEC Study Centre, Minister Farrell said Australia would also, when opportunities arose, engage to reform existing ISDS clauses.