Wednesday 28 February, 2018

In a time of major changes to the global trade policy landscape, the EU and Australia are about to launch negotiations for an ambitious and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (FTA). This agreement is set to further anchor the EU in the burgeoning Asia-Pacific region and enable Australia to diversify its global trading relationships in a time of rising protectionism.

The main drivers for the FTA between Australia and the EU are business, economic and geopolitical. Rising nationalism, aggressive quid pro quo approaches to industrial policy, and protectionism in international trade, particularly in the world’s leading economies of the U.S. and China, are sounding alarm bells in both Brussels and Canberra. Preserving the world’s multilateral rules-based trading system will be a key objective for the EU-Australia FTA.

The deal is moreover expected to bring significant economic benefits. While the EU could see a major increase in motor equipment, machinery and pharmaceuticals export, the single biggest opportunity for Australia lies in the services sector, including finance, education, travel and tourism. Overall, the European Commission estimated that the FTA could add €4.9 billion (AUD$7.7 billion) to the EU’s GDP and €4.2 billion (AUD$6.6 billion) to Australia’s GDP in the long term.

Learn about key stakeholder interests and discover the business, economic and geopolitical issues driving the momentum for the EU-Australia trade agreement in our latest report. This is important reading for any company with a stake in EU-Australia trade relations.

Weber Shandwick and our sister agency Powell Tate monitor the shifting global trade environment and assist clients with government relations and navigating complex regulatory and legal issues. We help our clients make sense of today’s risks and opportunities.

Please download the full report here: EU-AUS FTA Negotiations Status and Opportunities.