Xinhua Net - 18 December 2019
HKSAR, Australia to put in force free trade, investment agreements in January
The Free Trade Agreement and Investment Agreement signed between China’s Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and Australia in March will enter into force on Jan. 17, 2020.
The deals will create more business opportunities and enhance trade and investment flows between Hong Kong and Australia, the HKSAR government said Wednesday in a statement.
After the agreements take effect, Hong Kong-originating goods will enter Australia tariff-free after simplified procedures. Hong Kong service providers can enjoy market access and treatment no less favorable than Australian peers in some 140 service sectors, where Hong Kong has traditional strengths, including professional services and financial services.
Hong Kong investors can enjoy more favorable access to the Australian market, such as higher monetary thresholds for investment screening. Investors from both places will also benefit from the modern provisions on treatment and protection under the new agreement.
"The agreements which cover trade in goods, trade in services, investment, government procurement, intellectual property, competition and other related areas are comprehensive, modern and of high standard," Edward Yau, secretary for commerce and economic development of the HKSAR government, said.
"The commitments we made to each other far exceed our World Trade Organization commitments, thereby enabling our goods, services and investments to enter each other’s markets under more preferential terms," Yau said.
Yau stressed Hong Kong’s pursuit of free and open trade and investment and support for the rules-based trading system. "Hong Kong will continue to explore free trade opportunities with like-minded economic and trading partners."