Duty free access

THE world’s 49 least developed countries (LDC) and East Timor now receive duty free and quota-free access to the Australian market, effective as of last week (July 1).

The new legislation gives effect to the Prime Minister’s announcement last October at the APEC Leaders’ Meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico, of duty free and quota-free access for goods originating in LDCs.

The Government has also extended the preferential access to East Timor.

Trade Minister Mark Vaile said Australia had provided preferential market access for the world’s poorest countries for many years.

“Australia’s initiative is comprehensive and unqualified. It does not exclude sensitive sectors or provide phasing-in arrangements for items such as agricultural products, which are often missing from the packages provided to LDCs by other major developed countries,” he said.

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