Lance Hockridge calls for bi-partisan support for the China Australia Free Trade Agreement
Managing Director & CEO Lance Hockridge today urged bi-partisan support for the China Australia Free Trade Agreement to deliver the next level of economic development between the two countries.
In an address to the Australia China Business Council in Brisbane, Lance acknowledged that China was already Australia's largest trading partner and that the services sector, tourism and education was the next big opportunity for Australia.
"It would be difficult to overstate the benefits the FTA with China will bring to Australia. Take as one example Aurizon's customers in the Queensland coal sector, who are facing challenging times. The FTA will deliver them relief by cutting China's import tariffs on our coal," Lance said.
"Arguably, however, the real benefit the FTA gives Australia is access to China's large, and rapidly growing, middle class. A population that is predicted by McKinsey to grow from around 200 million today to more than 600 million by 2022. What an opportunity in terms of a potential market for our professional services, for tourism, for education… and for our agricultural products."