ASEAN – Australia – NZ trade agreement publicized in central region

A seminar was held in Da Nang City on June 23 to introduce the ASEAN – Australia – New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA), which was formed in January 2010.

Vietnamese agricultural products, food and consumer products exported to Australia and New Zealand will be exempt from taxes by 2020.

The seminar jointly held by the Danang City chapter of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Australia Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City, aimed to promote AANZFTA to Vietnamese businesses in the central region.

This is the largest Free Trade Agreement Australia has ever signed and the most comprehensive Free Trade Agreement to enter into force within ASEAN.

Under AANZFTA, all partners including Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Myanmar, Singapore, Vietnam and Malaysia agreed to reduce tariffs from 90 percent to 100 percent until 2020. Specifically, Australia agreed to systematically reduce tariffs down the line, with 100 per cent of tariffs to be eliminated by 2020. In return, tariffs on 96 percent of Australia’s current exports to ASEAN will be eliminated by 2020.

AANZFTA covers commodities, services, investment, intellectual property, e-commerce and economic cooperation.

Trade Ministers from ASEAN, Australia and New Zealand signed onto AANZFTA February 27, 2009 in Thailand.

Two-way trade between Australia and Vietnam has grown at an average of 22 percent a year over the last five years, reaching US$8 billion in 2007-08.

Australia’s total exports to Vietnam rose 17 percent to US$2.3 billion in 2007-08.

With AANZFTA, Vietnamese businesses will have a chance to exploit the markets of Australia and New Zealand.

Vietnamese agricultural products, food and consumer products exported to Australia and New Zealand will be exempt from taxes by 2020.

By N.Hung, translated by Thanh Huong

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