House debates

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Questions without Notice


2:44 pm

Photo of Fiona MartinFiona Martin (Reid, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is for the Minister representing the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment. Will the minister update the House on how the Morrison government's stable and certain trade policies are strengthening our economy?

Photo of Dan TehanDan Tehan (Wannon, Liberal Party, Minister for Education) Share this | | Hansard source

Can I thank the member for Reid for her question. It's fantastic to note that she's asking questions that are really relevant to her electorate and which will make sure that jobs continue to grow in her electorate.

Since we came to office, we have concluded FTAs with China, Korea and Japan, as well as the Trans-Pacific Partnership. And yesterday a further step was taken in finalising FTAs with Indonesia, Peru and Hong Kong. When we came to office, 26 per cent of our trade was covered by FTAs. As a result of our government's policies, that is now 70 per cent. That means for our exporters that they have frameworks and they have certainty when it comes to exporting. This means that they can create jobs.

One in five jobs is created in this nation as a result of trade. When it comes to rural and regional areas, it's one in four. It is incredibly important to our nation. As a result of these FTAs with Indonesia, with Peru and with Hong Kong, we're going to see further access to these important markets for our grain, beef and dairy farmers; for our education sector; for our financial services sector; and for our mining services sector. Right across the board we're going to see improved access. And what will this lead to? This will lead to jobs.

Our government has created 1.5 million jobs since we came to office. What are we aiming to do? Create 1.25 million jobs in the next five years. What is going to be one of the key ingredients? What is going to be one of the most important drivers of us meeting that target? It's going to be exports. It's going to be trade agreements. It's going to be making sure that our farmers have the certainty that they need to be able to export. It's going to mean making sure that our financial services sector has the certainty to be able to export. It's going to mean that our education providers have the certainty that they need to be able to access the markets that are so important to our future.

This has been one of the absolute drivers of our government since we came to office: making sure these frameworks are there to provide the certainty that we need to continue to create jobs—right across this nation but also, importantly, to create jobs in regional and rural areas, where trade is absolutely essential to our industries.