New Economic Opportunities from Australia-Malaysia Agreement

The Business Council of Australia (BCA) said today’s signing of the free trade agreement (FTA) between Australia and Malaysia would make an important contribution to strengthening economic relations between the two nations.

BCA Chief Executive Jennifer Westacott said the FTA would help open up new opportunities for businesses in established and emerging economic sectors.

“The economic relationship between Australia and Malaysia has tremendous potential, as reflected in the significant recent growth in trade between our two nations,” said Ms Westacott.

“The signing of the FTA is particularly timely given the economic challenges faced by industry.”

Ms Westacott said the BCA was pleased the two governments have made commitments to reduce barriers to trade in goods and services, and to improve the rules relating to investment.

“Importantly, the FTA also allows for further improving arrangements for the movement of people for commercial purposes,” she said.

“Governments, in cooperation with business and industry, need to continue the work of opening up economies to greater trade and investment. This is what enables increased levels of growth and the creation of jobs.

“Removing impediments to businesses investing and doing business across borders is a fundamental way of making the most of Australia’s current and future opportunities in the Asian Century. The Australia–Malaysia FTA provides an example of how this can be achieved.”

Ms Westacott congratulated Trade Minister Craig Emerson, and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, for successfully negotiating this important agreement.

“We look forward to seeing further progress on other important trade and investment negotiations Australia is pursuing in Asia and the region.”