FTA roundup

T1 and T2 have both been quick off the mark in blogging about the just-announced Australia/US Free Trade Agreement. T1 is predictably laudatory (“It ain’t perfect, but it’s an improvement“), and merely copies and pastes the Australian’s dot point summary of the main features of the deal.

T2 equally predictably shitcans the deal, but at least provides some considered analysis and useful links to a range of resources (e.g. DFAT’s detailed summary of the FTA).

Personally, I’ll be deferring judgment until I have time to read more of the detail, and the range of expert analyses that will certainly be published over the next few days. You can find the Fairfax and Murdoch press summaries of the main features of the FTA here and here.

Update – John Quiggin also has a post. It doesn’t say very much, but the comment box contributions are well worth reading. Kim Weatherall suggests that Howard/Vaile seem to have sold out on IP/copyright issues (which should be very disturbing to all genuine libertarians as opposed to uncritical conservative Howard-boosters like T1), while Geoff Honnor (who apparently actually is still alive – I was starting to wonder) argues that, at least on first analysis, concessions on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme appear minimal and shouldn’t worry us too much.

Update 2 – Sarah Strasser at Catallaxy has a more extensive discussion of the IP/copyright aspects of the FTA, as well as a briefer mention of the competition law implications. The latter may potentially be a more positive aspect of the FTA, given that US competition/anti-trust laws are significantly superior in some respects than Australia’s.

Update 3 – Peter Gallagher (a blogger I hadn’t known about until now) has the best (or at least most apparently balanced) overview of the FTA and its likely impact that I’ve seen so far. Peter, I’ll add you to the blogroll when I get the time and energy to update it.

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

I am indeed alive having survived lightning strike power outage with consequent modem and monitor meltdown. Not to mention having to cope with the severe trauma that nextdoors’ hermaphroditic Sydney Silkie experienced as a result of being under the Camphor Laurel tree that took the hit.

The tree blokes are up the back removing it as I write – the tree I mean. I intend regaling you with the details in the near future.

Good to see you’re back Ken.

Peter Gallagher
2022 years ago

Ken,

Perhaps you’d like to look here: http://www.inquit.com/cgi-bin/blosxom/blosxom.cgi/2004/02/09#claytonsFTA

No less yellow than T1 and T2 but less bent.

Best wishes,

Peter

Jacques Chester
Jacques Chester
2022 years ago

The irony of trade theory is that most of these “free trade agreements” simply ignore it. The simplest and best way to open your borders to trade is to – gasp! – open your borders to trade.

The WTO and US-based FTAs are rapidly becoming a serious millstone around the neck of trade globally. In particular US corporate interests are locking in the same kind of government shelters overseas that they’ve already bought at home. Copyright laws are the most blatant example of such behaviour; there’ll be more I’m certain.

The problem with “harmonising” with the yanks is that they’re going down the tube. If we were going to deal, it should have been with China and India.

trackback
2022 years ago

Sweet FA from FTA

So far, all we have on the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement is a rewritten press release, but I think that’s enough to conclude that this is an election-loser for Howard. The reports have noted that there’s nothing on sugar and…

trackback
2022 years ago

Sweet FA from FTA

So far, all we have on the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement is a rewritten press release, but I think that’s enough to conclude that this is an election-loser for Howard. The reports have noted that there’s nothing on sugar and…