In brief - In Europe, negotiation is underway for an Australia-European Union Free Trade Agreement (EU Australian FTA). Preparation for an Australia-United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement has also commenced

The EU Australian FTA negotiations were announced in June 2018.

  • Round 4 of the EU Australian FTA, which included investment, occurred in July 2019.

Momentum is building and the Australian Government appears to have prioritised the EU Australian FTA negotiations over a potential UK Australia FTA (which can only take place after Brexit due to EU rules).

Continuing with a free trade agenda at first instance may be counter to the tariff and quota covenants, and possibly extraterritorial data and tax rules, that have been proposed in international markets. Exiting has also drawn intense focus.

However, striking a deal now may be more important than in the past. In finance, the creation of wealth in new regions in Asia and the Middle-East, technological development and new market wants in established economies (or emerging) could be the drivers for enhanced trade arrangements. 

Colin Biggers & Paisley has released a thematic review of the financial services aspects of a potential FTA, drawing upon its broad experience in financial services, finance and financial markets.

This is commentary published by Colin Biggers & Paisley for general information purposes only. This should not be relied on as specific advice. You should seek your own legal and other advice for any question, or for any specific situation or proposal, before making any final decision. The content also is subject to change. A person listed may not be admitted as a lawyer in all States and Territories. © Colin Biggers & Paisley, Australia 2019.

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