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Australia's Involvement in Free Trade Agreements: An Economic Evaluation

Mahinda Siriwardana ()

Global Economic Review, 2006, vol. 35, issue 1, 3-20

Abstract: The establishment of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) has become an integral part of Australia's current trade policy. Australia has signed FTAs with Singapore, Thailand and the US. Possibilities for similar agreements with the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), China, and Japan are being explored. This paper examines the effects of FTAs on the Australian economy and on the trading partners, drawing lessons from simulations of a number of free trade agreements. The simulations are undertaken using the Global Trade Analysis Project (GTAP) model. By simulating the GTAP multi-country computable general equilibrium (CGE) model, the paper provides quantitative evidence concerning the welfare impact of FTAs with special reference to trade creation and trade diversion. Examining responses of various production sectors identifies the structural changes that may take place in the economy over the long run. The findings may shed light on the debate over the potential incentives to participate in multilateral trade liberalization.

Keywords: Free trade agreement; general equilibrium; GTAP model (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2006
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