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United States and Australia Review Progress Under Bilateral FTA

Washington, D.C. – On May 3rd, officials from the United States and Australia held a meeting of the U.S.-Australia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Joint Committee to review implementation of the agreement. The two sides reaffirmed the importance of the FTA, noting that it is a key pillar of the close alliance partnership between the United States and Australia and has led to significantly expanded economic ties between the two countries. The officials discussed the functioning of the agreement, including related to specific goods, services, and investment issues, and ways to promote continued expansion of trade and investment between the two countries. Noting that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement builds on the high-standards in the bilateral FTA by establishing ambitious trade rules across the region, supporting well-paying jobs in both countries, promoting economic growth and innovation, and protecting workers and the environment, U.S. and Australian officials reviewed their efforts to conclude their respective approval processes for the TPP as soon as possible.

Background

Since the FTA entered into force in 2005, two-way trade between the United States and Australia has increased by 76 percent, with a U.S. surplus of $25.4 billion in 2015. Two-way goods trade has increased by 57 percent since the FTA entered into force, reaching $36 billion in 2015, while two-way services trade has increased by 151 percent to $26 billion. Foreign direct investment between the U.S. and Australia has more than doubled since 2005.