Cheaper wine and more freedom to work: What the UK-Australia trade deal could mean for you

·2-min read
Sydney harbour, Australia. Photo: Getty
Sydney harbour, Australia. Photo: Getty

A new trade agreement between the UK and Australia is in the works, and apart from being the UK's first trade deal agreed from scratch since Brexit, it could also be a boon for consumers and young people, too. 

Australian prime minister Scott Morrison met with British counterpart Boris Johnson on Tuesday at Downing Street, following the G7 summit.

PA Media reported that it was agreed over a dinner of Scottish salmon and Welsh lamb in Downing Street the day before.

The UK-Australia trade relationship was worth £13.9bn ($19.6bn) last year and is set to grow under the deal, which is yet to be approved by British parliament. The UK was Australia’s fifth largest trading partner in 2019. 

Watch: Britain and Australia agree a trade deal

Booze and cars

The free trade deal will eliminate tariffs on Australian favourites. Downing Street name checked the likes of Jacob’s Creek and Hardys wines as those that could become less expensive. 

The deal will also knock money off swimwear and confectionery.

The UK government said cuts to tariffs could save households up to £34m a year.

Read more: UK agrees first post-Brexit trade deal with Australia

Alongside the news on imports, it could be positive for exporters, too. Scotland exported £126m of beverages to Australia in 2020 – this deal will help distillers by removing tariffs of up to 5% on Scotch Whisky.

British cars, ceramics and confectionery will also be cheaper to sell into Australia with the tariff-free agreement.

Watch: What are freeports?

Travel and working visas

Previously, to get a working holiday visa for living and working in Australia you would have to be between the ages of 18 and 30. 

Under the new agreement, it seems that Brits under the age of 35 will be able to travel and work in Australia more freely.

Specifics haven't been outlined yet, but this could also mean a loosening of current rules which mean to stay more than a year you have to complete regional or farm work specified by the Australian government.

Business

The deal has made ambitious commitments on market access for services professionals, cutting-edge digital provisions and reduced barriers to investment.

The UK exported £5.4bn worth of services, including £1.4bn of insurance and pension services and £780m of financial services, to Australia in 2020.  

90% of all exports from Northern Ireland to Australia are machinery and manufacturing goods – used extensively in Australia’s mining, quarrying and recycling sectors. Under the new FTA tariffs will be removed and customs procedures will be simplified.

The government has said red tape and bureaucracy will be torn down for more than 13,000 small and medium sized businesses across the UK who already export goods to Australia, with quicker export times.

Watch: Raab welcomes Australian PM Scott Morrison in Westminster

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