Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement
Phase II NegotiationsThe second round of negotiations in the Australian-Thai Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA) will begin in the New Year and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is seeking submissions from businesses in Thailand. Key issues in the negotiation are: trade in goods; trade in services and investment in Thailand. This is the chance for AustCham Members to have their say on future business relations between Australia and Thailand. AustCham Members can do this in one of two ways: 1. Send a submission direct to the Australian Embassy; or 2. Contribute to a submission which AustCham is preparing. Further details about these two options are given below. We urge members to take this opportunity to send their views, either to the Embassy or to AustCham.
Course 1 - Direct to the Embassy:DFAT says stakeholder submissions will assist the Australian Government in developing priorities for the negotiations and in dealing with any existing problems with the implementation of the Agreement. Submissions can be anything from a short email to a lengthy analytical paper. Those who make submissions should say whether they authorise DFAT posting their name and/or the text of their submissions on its website. In developing Australia's priorities for the next phase of TAFTA negotiations, it would be helpful if submissions identified specific market access or other issues that affect two-way trade and investment. In terms of goods trade, relevant issues might include: tariffs; special agricultural safeguards; tariff rate quotas; import licensing; technical regulations and standards; customs administration; and quarantine requirements. In the case of services trade, stakeholder views might cover issues relating to specific tradeable services; issues relating to the recognition of qualifications and granting of license to practice one's profession; and, visas and other business mobility issues. In the area of investment, stakeholder views might cover any measures that may impact on investment and the establishment of a commercial presence in Thailand. DFAT also welcomes stakeholder views on other issues such as intellectual property, transparency of government regulations, government tendering processes or competition policy. For more information or assistance, please contact Amelia Henty, First Secretary (Political/Economical) at the Australian Embassy, on (02) 344 6370 or at Amelia.email@example.com. Head offices in Australia can also contact DFAT's Thailand desk for further information on +61 2 6261 1111.
Course 2: via AustChamAustCham Thailand aims to represent, as far as possible, the collective views and experience of its Members. AustCham has set up a group, headed by Director Ben Yong, to identify issues that affect our Members, problems Members have encountered and their hopes for the future. Members affected by TAFTA are invited to join this group. We would also welcome comments and suggestions to be included in the AustCham submission. Members who wish to join this group or would like to send their comments can do so either by calling the Chamber office on 02 210 0216 or by emailing Khun Chanakarn (Moo) at Chanakarn@austchamthailand.com. Deadline for any comments is by mid-January. AustCham welcomes this opportunity to contribute to the negotiations on how Australian and Thai companies can do business in, and with, each other's country.