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PBEC Trade Report June 2024

CHINA LIFTS AUSTRALIAN MEAT FACILITY BANS: China has lifted the trade suspensions on five Australia meat processing facilities. Eight beef processing facilities have now had suspensions lifted. Two facilities remain suspended. The latest action comes ahead of Chinese Premier Li’s planned visit to Australia in June.

SOUTH KOREA & UAE SIGN TRADE AGREEMENT: South Korea and the United Arab Emirates this week formally signed a bilateral closer economic partnership agreement. It was signed in Seoul. Meanwhile Australian and UAE officials have been meeting in Dubai this week to progress their CEPA negotiations.

US COMMERCE SECRETARY TO VISIT SINGAPORE: Commerce Secretary Raimondo will be in Singapore next week for an Indo-Pacific Economic Framework Ministerial Meeting. It follows a virtual Ministerial Meeting in March. The Singapore meeting will coincide with a IPEF Clean Economy Investor Forum.

AUSTRALIA & EUROPEAN UNION TO ENGAGE ON CRITICAL MINERALS: Australia and the EU have this week signed a memorandum of understanding to strengthen the supply of critical minerals. Trade Minister Farrell said the partnership would encourage EU investment in Australian renewable energy projects.

SOUTH KOREA & NEW ZEALAND TALK TRADE: South Korean and New Zealand officials met in Seoul on Tuesday for their 6th FTA Joint Committee meeting. It was their first meeting in four years. Trade between the two economies has grown by 85% since a bilateral free trade agreement entered into force in 2015.

CHINA, JAPAN & SOUTH KOREA TO ACCELERATE FTA TALKS: Leaders from China, Japan and South Korea met in Seoul on Monday and agreed to accelerate negotiations for a trilateral free trade agreement. They will also encourage the RCEP Joint Committee to accelerate discussion on new member procedures.

AUSTRALIA INTRODUCES TRADE LEGISLATION: Legislation to ban the export of live sheep by sea from 2028 has been tabled in Parliament. It prompted a firm reaction from the National Farmers’ Federation which urged MPs and Senators not to fall victim to a misinformation campaign by animal activists.

TAIWAN & UK SIGN FARM TRADE AGREEMENT: Taiwan and the United Kingdom have signed an MOU to facilitate organic agriculture cooperation. The MOU will allow the trade in related products and follows earlier agreements by Taiwan with Japan, Australia, New Zealand, US, Canada, India and Paraguay.

THAI OFFICIALS PREPARE FOR EU FTA TALKS: Thai trade officials will soon be in Brussels for a third round of resumed free trade agreement negotiations. The talks are to begin on June 17. Negotiations for an FTA first began in 2013 but were suspended in 2014. The negotiations resumed in September 2023.

SINGAPORE ESTABLISHES TRADE WORKING GROUP: Singapore has formed a working group with Lao and Cambodia to facilitate cross-border electricity trade as part of an ASEAN Power Grid. Its work focus will include regulatory approvals and commercial arrangements for the export and import of electricity.

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