TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - China and Australia has signed a free trade agreement on Monday, November 17, 2014. The agreement was signed by President Xi Jinping of China and Prime Minister Tony Abbott of Australia.
The agreement is the third FTA signed by Australia this year, following similar agreements with South Korea and Japan, as Australia looks to increase its exports of food and agricultural products to feed Asia's growing middle-class people.
One of the points in the agreement is to exempt tariffs for Australian dairy products export into china for four years, meaning that Australia must compete closely with New Zealand.
Meanwhile, Australian wine makers have successfully sold products valued more than AU$200 million to China, despite the high tax charge of 14 to 30 percent, which will also be exempted in the agreement.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott explained that the agreement is geared towards sustainable economy. "This is the most comprehensive agreement made by China that involves other countries," he said.
Parliament secretary Josh Frydenberg said that the agreement provides a huge opportunity for more than 95 percent of Australia's product to be exported to China, free of tariffs. In the last two decades, trade between China and Australia continues to grow. Currently, China is Australia's second largest trade partner.
BBC | REUTERS | RR ARIYANI