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The Australia-United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement (A-UKFTA) will come into effect on May 31. The trade agreement is expected to deliver unprecedented benefits to Australian businesses, workers, and the broader economy. 

“The Australia-UK FTA represents one of the most comprehensive, innovative and ambitious free trade agreements concluded by Australia to date and strengthens an already close relationship between Australia and the UK,” said Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.  

The Law Council of Australia (LCA) supports the agreement, and praised the guarantee that Australian lawyers can work in the UK and provide legal advice on Australian law as well as arbitration, conciliation, and mediation.  

“Another key element of the Agreement is the establishment of the Legal Services Regulatory Dialogue, which will enable collaboration between our legal professions and regulators with the aim of developing and implementing a more seamless process for the two-way movement of lawyers,” former LCA President Jacoba Brasch previously said.  

“The Law Council is pleased to be one of the organisations who will represent the Australian legal profession in the Dialogue,” she said. 

“We will work to expand opportunities for Australian lawyers as a result of the A-UKFTA, deepening the already strong links between our two professions.” 

We will work to expand opportunities for Australian lawyers as a result of the A-UKFTA, deepening the already strong links between our two professions.

Jacoba Brasch, former LCA President 

The A-UKFTA will establish a framework for professional bodies to streamline licensing procedures. The aim being to facilitate the movement of qualified professionals between Australia and the UK.  

The deal will make it easier for Australians to live and work in the UK. In 2025, Australians aged 35 and under will be eligible to apply for a working holiday visa in the UK. This was previously capped at those aged 30 and under. The visa will also grant Australians three years stay instead of two.  

Under the agreement, Australian exporters will enjoy enhanced access to the UK market. Over 99 per cent of Australian goods exported to the UK will be tariff-free, opening up new opportunities for various sectors, including agriculture.  

Australian products such as wine, rice, honey, nuts, auto-parts, electrical equipment, and cosmetic products will gain easier entry into the British market. 

Australia will gradually gain access to expanding tariff quotas for agricultural products such as beef, sheep meat, dairy and sugar. Within ten years, these tariff quotas will be eliminated entirely.   

This will result in approximately $200 million a year in savings. By 2028, all UK imports will enter Australia duty free, providing relief to households grappling with the cost-of-living crisis and reducing input costs for Australian businesses.  

The A-UKFTA will also introduce digital trade rules to provide greater certainty and facilitate the growth of Australian businesses’ digital footprint in the UK. 

Minister for Trade and Tourism Senator Don Farrell said the agreement aims to benefit Australian exporters, businesses, workers, and consumers through open trade with the UK. 

“This trade agreement will remove unnecessary barriers to trade between our two countries and open up new markets for our world-class goods and services,” said Farrell. 

“Our economy is stronger when global trade flows freely and the Australian government is delivering on our commitment to strengthen and diversify our trading relationships,” he said. 

The deal also incorporates a strong commitment to environmental and labour targets. It ensures that the Australian Government retains the right to regulate in the public interest, including areas such as the environment, education, and health.  

Notably, the agreement does not include an Investor-State Dispute Settlement mechanism.