Trans-Pacific Partnership signals arrival of a new trade bloc

“The Business Council congratulates the Australian Government for signing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the first regional trade agreement spanning the Asia Pacific, and looks forward to swift ratification of the agreement from all parties,” Business Council of Australia Chief Executive Jennifer Westacott said. 

“The TPP levels the playing field for business, workers and farmers, which means more jobs, higher wages, stronger growth, a higher standard of living and new economic opportunities for Australia.

“It is the first concrete step towards realising the long-term vision of a Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific, and brings close to half of global trade and around 70 per cent of Australia's trade under one trade agreement.

“As an ambitious, deep and comprehensive trade agreement, the TPP addresses a wide range of complex trade policy issues that go beyond the scope of bilateral free trade agreements.

“The agreement will reduce tariffs and restrictiveness of non-tariff measures as well as harmonize a range of regulations to encourage the integration of supply chains and cross-border investment.

“Against the background of slowing trade growth, rising non-tariff impediments to trade, and insufficient progress in global negotiations, the ratification of the TPP represents an important milestone for Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.

“Seen in the context of the cumulative impact of three ambitious bilateral free trade agreements these deals open the door for Australia to the geographical epicentre of global growth,” Ms Westacott said.