South Australia must be better positioned to take advantage of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement signed last night to arrest the State’s falling merchandise exports.
Figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show a 6.4 per cent drop in the value of merchandise exports over the past 12 months.
Shadow Minister for Investment and Trade Tim Whetstone said tariff eliminations in the TPP opened up potential for South Australian exporters to add billions to the State’s bottom line.
“As we see South Australia slip further away from Labor’s export target, the Federal Coalition are working hard to secure a brighter future for South Australian exporters,” Mr Whetstone said.
“The TPP will have tariff advantages for important South Australian industries including beef, dairy, wine, horticulture and seafood through to manufactured goods, resources and energy, as well as our non-resource sectors such as education.
“As small to medium businesses (SMEs) look to establish further market access following a list of important free trade agreements being reached, I’d like to see the State Government invest further in our export businesses to create jobs and grow the economy.”
Mr Whetstone said the 12 countries involved in the TPP signing were important exporting areas for South Australia.
“South Australia must increase its national export share and removing tariffs on a range of goods and services for some of the state’s key trading partners, such as the US, New Zealand and Japan to name a few, is a positive move,” Mr Whetstone said.
“We need to ensure SMEs in South Australia are able to capitalise on export opportunities and form long term relationships with trading partners.
“The Federal Coalition is doing everything it can to assist South Australian exporters, now we need the Weatherill Labor Government to come to the party and invest further in exports for future growth.”