Australia Walks Away from EU Trade Talks for Second Time

Must Read

News in brief: Australia has abandoned trade talks with the European Union for a second time in three months, jeopardising any potential agreement, primarily due to disagreements on agriculture products.

Australia has walked away from talks with the European Union (EU) on a free trade deal for the second time in three months, a news story says. This latest decision seriously jeopardises any agreement and pushes it into next year or beyond.

The talks collapsed over disagreements on agriculture, with Australia demanding better access to the EU market for its farm products. Meanwhile, the EU, for its part, insists that Australia recognise more of its geographical indication (GI) names, such as feta and prosecco.

A GI name is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and qualities. For example, feta cheese must be produced in Greece in order to be labeled as feta. The EU has registered hundreds of GI names for its food and wine products, and it is very protective of them.

However, Australia has argued that recognising EU GIs would be unfair to its local farmers and producers. The government added that the EU is not offering enough access to its market for its agricultural products like beef, sheep, dairy, and sugar.

The European Commission has said that Australia had re-tabled agricultural demands that did not reflect recent negotiations and progress made between senior officials. It claimed that it stands ready to continue negotiations but industry analysts believe that there is still a significant gap between the two sides on key issues.

The collapse of the trade talks is a setback for both parties. A free trade deal would have significantly boosted trade between their economies and created jobs. However, it is now clear that both sides will need to make more concessions if they want to reach an agreement.

The failure to reach common ground has raised questions as to how the United Kingdom succumed to Australia’s demand in a similar trade deal in some cirlces.

Some social commentators believe that EU is refusing to open its markets to more competition as well. As it stands, governments on either side will have to help their farmers compete with foreign products when they eventually sign the deal or it may never be completed.

Joseph Akahome
Joseph Akahome
Joseph O Akahome (OJ) is a writer, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Literature from the University of Benin. He is an avid agriculturist, with a bias for poultry and an insatiable appetite for chicken wings. When he is neither reading nor researching, he likes to spend recreational time playing board games, or swimming in serene forested lakes.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

More Articles Like This

Latest News

Nigeria’s Flour Mills, Dangote, And Others Kick-Start Exports Under AfCFTA

News in briefs: - Flour Mills and eight other Nigerian companies are the first to begin trading under a new free...

Subscribe

  • Gain full access to our premium content
  • Never miss a story with active notifications
  • Browse free from up to 5 devices at once