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Australia


A political placebo
Opponents of the Australia-US free trade agreement are nothing if not obstinate - and opportunist. A year after the deal was done the world has not ended, but they still say catastrophe is imminent, especially for the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.
Power play hurts the nation’s health
The Labor Party’s 2004 amendments to the legislation enabling the free trade agreement with the US have nothing to do with good policy and everything to do with good politics.
The high cost of free trade
WHEN the free trade agreement with the United States kicked in a year ago, Bill Rush saw his big chance. His company, Australian Defence Apparel, makes ceramic plates to be worn over bulletproof vests to protect troops against armour-piercing fire.
Free and fair trade
TWO new developments have raised alarm bells about the free trade agreement between Australia and the US.
Done like a dinner on free trade deal
TO laugh or to cry? That is the question. Do you laugh at the increasingly ludicrous attempts by defenders of the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement to explain away the results of the FTA’s operation since it came into effect on January 1 last year?
FTA ’a dud deal’
There are calls today for Australia to scrap the free trade agreement.
US sugar farmers say they will strongy oppose any changes to the FTA
The US Sugar Alliance, representing cane and beet farmers, says it will lobby strongly against any further opening of the US market to Australian sugar. Meantime, there are calls today for Australia to scrap the free trade agreement.
Vaile to fight US on sugar
Australia will urge the US to prise open its lucrative sugar markets as part of a fresh push to improve access for farmers under the free trade deal. The Howard Government’s renewed attempt to secure a better deal from the free trade agreement came as Acting Prime Minister Mark Vaile defended lopsided results from the first year of the pact.
United States the FTA winner one year on
The government has blamed a stronger currency and increased competition from Asia for a disappointing first year in Australia’s new trade pact with the United States.
Exports plummet in post-FTA trade
Government figures show Australian exports to the US have fallen since the US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) came into force a year ago. In the 12 months to October last year, Australian exports to the United States fell by 4.7 per cent while US imports rose by 5.7 per cent.
Drug companies pressure Govt to review FTA
The debate over the cost of medicines in Australia took a new twist today, with Acting Prime Minister Mark Vaile declaring the Government will have a second look at provisions within the Free Trade Agreement with the United States. They’re provisions that were specifically designed to keep the cost of pharmaceuticals down.
NFF backs FTA despite export figures
The National Farmers Federation (NFF) is still backing the Australia-US free trade agreement, despite poor terms of trade in its first year of operation.
Japan to pursue free trade deals with China - paper
Japan is likely to pursue free-trade agreements with China and India as well as Australia to give it more clout in a proposed East Asian community, a leading Japanese daily reported on Tuesday.
FTA change will push drug prices up: ALP
The Federal Opposition is warning the cost of medicines will rise if a Labor amendment designed to protect Australian drug prices in the US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is removed.
Australian businesses reap rewards of Thai free trade agreement
The Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA) has benefited Australian companies since it began in January through expanded opportunities and increased market access, Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade, Mark Vaile, said.
GCC mulls FTAs with Singapore, Australia
GCC finance ministers said the six states were considering foreign trade deals with Singapore and Australia to widen existing talks for bilateral accords with some of its member states.
Australian ambassador’s big regret: no FTA
Australian Ambassador Colin Heseltine left Seoul two days ago for home at the end of his assignment with one major bit of unfinished business - he was not able to push the excellent bilateral relations between both countries to an even higher level with a free trade agreement.
Free trade, but not fair trade
Early results of the free trade agreements (FTAs) Thailand made with China, Australia, New Zealand and India are quite worrying for the country.
Free trade agreements draw flak
Thailand and Australia - two countries at the forefront of a regional proliferation of bilateral free trade agreements - will be worth watching at the World Trade Organization talks starting in Hong Kong on December 13.
FTA boosts Thai-Australian trade by nearly 50% in first 10 months of 2005
The value of bilateral trade between Thailand and Australia soared nearly 50% during the first 10 months of 2005, compared to the corresponding period of last year, thanks to the free trade area (FTA) agreement signed and implemented by the two countries one year ago.