RCEP will create more trade and investment opportunities for Australia’s minerals sector

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The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) signed yesterday by 15 countries, including Australia, will create more trade and investment opportunities for our nation’s minerals industry.

This long-awaited agreement, the world’s largest, signalled Australia and the SE Asian region’s shared commitment to open trade and investment.

Trade, investment and economic co-operation maximise opportunities for Australia’s minerals industry to boost national income, generate government revenue and create high value jobs.

One in five jobs in Australia is trade related and exporting companies on average have workforces 24 per cent larger than non-exporting companies and pay 11.5 per cent higher wages. Trade and investment boost economic growth, support jobs and improve living standards across Australia including in rural and regional areas.

RCEP includes the ten ASEAN nations – who collectively constitute our nation’s second largest two-way trading partner – and successfully brings Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea into this regional trading block with them.

The harmonisation of rules provides the basis for significant trade and investment in the fastest growing region in the world, enabling business to trade and invest efficiently across the range of services, products and infrastructure.

It also provides the basis for co-operation and partnership that will drive the jobs, productivity and wellbeing of all who participate.

Comprehensive regional trade agreements such as RCEP are critical in filling the void created by a stalemate in rules-making at the multilateral level and the rise of protectionist sentiments.

Deeper integration through regional agreements will generate additional trade and output gains in Australia’s sectors of comparative advantage.

The MCA’s ‘New Frontiers’ research project released last week has found that Australia’s mining export success story in the Asian region has a long way to run. The report highlights Australia’s vital interest in keeping international trade open and growing, and the role of the Australian government in leading by example.

The RCEP provides the landscape for Australia to continue being a major source of resources for Asia’s growing economies, supporting their growth and contributing to deeper economic, social and cultural ties to the benefit of everyone in our region.


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