Thursday, 13 September 2018
Customs Amendment (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation) Bill 2018, Customs Tariff Amendment (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation) Bill 2018; Second Reading
The member opposite refers to plain packaging. A challenge was mounted and it failed, which proves the fact that the protections that are involved in those agreements are working as they should. There's nothing in our legal system that stops someone making a claim. What is important is the outcome of those claims. What is just as important is that, as a country with a strong legal system and a great sense of the importance of eliminating sovereign risk, these provisions provide Australian businesses with so much greater certainty in their relationships and dealings with countries where the legal system does not meet or have the standards that we would expect and impose upon ourselves. Therefore, the net benefit of these agreements, in my view, is overwhelming.
The other thing that I want to touch on, and the member for Melbourne referred to this, is in relation to the labour market. I want to make absolutely and abundantly clear that nothing in this agreement weakens or lessens the requirements or the skills testing involved in anyone wanting to come and work in Australia. They will apply at the national level and they will apply at the state level. I commend this bill to the House.