It is great to see so much friendship and collaboration between India and Australia – but it is time to go to another level and have a serious shot at getting a free-trade agreement between the two countries.
Here’s 3 reasons why an FTA is now urgent:
India wants greater access to Australia’s resources.
Australia wants alternatives to China for resources and wine.
India wants investment and Australia has huge funds under management.
Patience around the FTA has been a good approach but now we have to step up the pace and get on with it.
We need some form of harvest agreements to take the heat out of agriculture – which is always a super-hot political topic in India.
Also, India seriously wants investment flows and Australia has not been forthcoming. Time for the Australian Government to lead our huge investment funds into India.
The reality is – close relations in trade mostly follow investment, and Australia has not invested heavily in India.
Wine barriers to India are huge – there is a 150% tariff – and yet wines like Orlando Jacob’s Creek have done well there.
One problem for India is they are encouraging their own wine industry, typically at the low end of the market. Perhaps they can free up tariffs on high end wine imports?
The relationship between Prime Ministers Modi and Morrison is close and could be a building block for an FTA.
Let’s put it top of the agenda!