New regional deal a win for Australia

Agreement on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is a win for all Australians, helping create new jobs and open new markets to Australian goods and services, Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott said.

“A more competitive Australia means more investment and new jobs, RCEP will help give Australia an edge when it comes to trading with some of our biggest neighbours. Australia’s economic growth story has been built in large part on trade and investment with Asia, this agreement will help lock in a new wave of growth and new jobs.

“Greater access to new and growing markets in the region will help breathe life into regional towns by creating new jobs and industries, letting Australian businesses innovate and expand, as well as giving Australian consumers greater choices.

“This is a substantial agreement covering 15 nations and around 30 per cent of world GDP and its impact will continue to grow with room for India to sign up over coming years. The significance of this achievement should not be underestimated given its unprecedented scale and the diversity of the partners involved, including China and Japan. 

“More liberal trade is Australia’s life-blood and helps sustain one in five Australian jobs, RCEP will help magnify that impact. At a time when some voices, internationally and in Australia, are questioning the benefits of open trade we welcome the government’s steadfast commitment to the values of open based trade and a rules-based system. 

“Employers look forward to a time when India can sign up and boost the impact of this ground-breaking deal, and are ready to support the government in efforts towards that goal.”