Australian businesses reap rewards of Thai free trade agreement

Asia Pulse News

AUSTRALIAN BUSINESSES REAP REWARDS OF THAI FREE TRADE AGREEMENT

Friday December 30, 2005

SYDNEY, Dec 30 Asia Pulse - The Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA) has benefited Australian companies since it began in January through expanded opportunities and increased market access, Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade, Mark Vaile, said.

"During the first ten months of TAFTA, Austrade helped 177 companies make export sales in Thailand, an increase of 34 per cent over the same period the previous year," Mr Vaile said in a statement.

And the benefits look set to increase. Under the agreement, Australian businesses will gain additional tariff cuts and quota increases from January 1, 2006, with almost all tariffs on Australian exports to Thailand removed over time, Mr Vaile said.

In addition, Thailand committed to repeal health certification requirements for Australian companies on certain food products at the first TAFTA Joint Commission meeting held this month.

The minister said TAFTA stands besides the country’s other successful free trade agreements with the United States, Singapore and New Zealand, while the government is negotiating further agreements with other key markets including China, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates and, together with New Zealand, ASEAN.

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source: Asia Pulse