Virginia, US
Free Trade Agreement Signed
| Simon Haag

Free Trade Agreement Signed

The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) was signed on 17 June 2015, and will come into effect later this year. The ChAFTA marks an historic step toward greater business and investment opportunities between Australia and China. The Agreement will reduce restrictions for temporary skilled workers, investors and business visitors travelling between the two countries.  
Australia’s commitments will broadly fit within the existing settings of the 600 business visitor visa and the 400 and 457 work visa programmes, with universal access to online lodgement systems and an undertaking to reduce visa processing times. In addition, infrastructure projects which are controlled by a Chinese enterprise will benefit from facilitated recognition of skills and qualifications, and an exemption from labour market testing. 
In return, China has committed to providing access to Australian intra-corporate transferees, business visitors, contractual service suppliers and technical specialists. For the first time, China will provide entry to the spouse and dependents of assignees, for stays of over 12 months. 
Other commitments include a Work and Holiday Visa agreement to allow working holiday makers to visit each other’s countries; and an Australian pilot programme for a ten-year tourist visa for Chinese nationals, allowing a three month stay per entry.

MARN 0849574