2014-01-29 14:32:51 Source: 1688 Original URL Nikiedit

According to a report by The Australian on Tuesday, Australia and Japan will sign a bilateral free trade agreement in July. The signing of this agreement coincides with a visit to Australia by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Abe will also become the first Japanese leader to deliver a speech in the Australian Parliament.

It is reported that Prime Minister Albert will go to Tokyo to meet with Japanese officials in April, and the bilateral free trade agreement will be reached after that. Albert's visit will emphasize the importance of concluding the Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement and establishing closer security ties between the two countries. Previously, the Prime Minister described Japan as Australia’s “best friend in Asia”.

The Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement has received internal support from Japan’s powerful bureaucratic group, but it is unlikely to be as comprehensive as the free trade agreement reached between Australia and South Korea last month. Nevertheless, Australia’s rice and wheat exports may still gain beneficial.

According to reports, Mr. Yasunori Nakayama, Japan’s chief negotiator for bilateral talks and the Deputy Director of International Trade Policy at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan, said that Prime Minister Abe’s determination to conclude a free trade agreement with Australia was “very, very firm”.

Mr. Zhongshan described the Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement as "a very strategic agreement" because Australia is Japan’s second largest supplier of goods and the second largest buyer of Japanese cars, second only to both in terms of In the United States.

From Australia's point of view, in general, Japan is Australia's second largest trading partner, second only to China.

Mr. Zhongshan said that the importance of the Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement “surpasses pure economic value” and will “further consolidate the foundation of our partnership” in a wider area. In 2013, the total trade volume between Australia and Japan reached 540 billion yuan. The signing of the bilateral free trade agreement will bring billions in business opportunities to Australian companies, especially agricultural export companies.

Previously, the stalemate in the negotiation of the Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement was mainly due to the 5% tariff imposed by Australia on imported cars and Japan's import restrictions on agricultural products and beef. If the bilateral free trade agreement is signed, both aspects will change.

On Monday, Federal Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb confirmed that he had a very pleasant meeting with his Japanese counterparts in Davos, Switzerland during the weekend. Last year, Rob also met with Prime Minister Abe in Tokyo. In addition, officials of the two countries have done a lot of behind-the-scenes work to facilitate the signing of the bilateral free trade agreement.

Australia's direct investment in Japan is 2.2 million yuan, while Japan's direct investment in Australia is as high as 612 billion yuan. In the free trade agreement between Australia and South Korea, South Korea's investment projects in Australia with no more than 10 billion yuan are exempt from the approval of the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB). This discount is also likely to be given to Japan.

(1688)