19 February 2018
Boosting Trade and Investment Opportunities
Rhys Roberts, Managing Director of Roberts Gray Lawyers today called for a national collaborative effort to ensure best possible outcomes from Free Trade Agreements.
“In recent years, a lot of work has gone into development of Free Trade Agreements, especially bi-lateral agreements,” said Mr Roberts.
“These initiatives create real trade and investment opportunities for the future and will pave the way for ensuring growth in the Australian economy.”
Mr Roberts said it is now time to review the impediments to businesses seeking opportunities arising from Free Trade Agreements so that their real potential can be achieved.
“In some cases, the nett benefit to the Australian economy from a Free Trade Agreement has been negative. In some cases, exports have declined,” said Mr Roberts.
“One of the main impediments to success, after a Free Trade Agreement is signed, is the differences between the legal systems between the countries that have signed an agreement.”
“It would be useful for Australian businesses, if the Commonwealth Government, in parallel with each proposed new Free Trade Agreement, undertook a legal system comparison as a ‘kick starter’ for investigating new markets,” he said.
“Established large business may have a legal team at their disposal to undertake a review of different rules of competition within the parties to a Free Trade Agreement and to prepare plans to address issues relating to differences between legal systems.”
“For small businesses, however this is a daunting prospect. We need a national effort to identify relevant legal issues and provide basic information that will assist with bridging the gap between political-legal systems when considering new export opportunities,” Mr Roberts said.
Managing Director, Senior Partner
Roberts Gray Lawyers
Phone: + 61 3 9642 2666