What do you do when you have a skills shortage? Well, you invite all single Brits under the age of 35 years of age to enter your country for an exclusive 3-year visa – no strings attached. But to top it off – you make it easier for Brits to buy Tim Tams (gods own biscuit).
That’s what Australia has just agreed to in the final iteration of the Free Trade Agreement with the United Kingdom, announced today. The agreement has been in the works for some time and is being hailed as a big step forward in forging business opportunities between both countries.
What does it mean:
According to the Department for International Trade, the agreement will:
- Provides UK firms guaranteed access to bid for an additional £10bn of Australian public sector contracts per year;
- Ensures young people have access to work and travel in Australia for up to three years at a time, removing previous visa conditions;
- Permits UK architects, scientists, researchers, lawyers and accountants to have access to visas to work in Australia without being subject to Australia’s changing skilled occupation list (SOL);
- Removes tariffs on all UK exports, making it cheaper to sell products like cars, Scotch whisky and UK fashion to Australia, while making Australian goods like Jacob’s Creek and Hardys wines, Tim Tams and surfboards more accessible for British consumers.
As the first agreement of its kind, post-Brexit, the United Kingdom is working closely with its strategic allies in cementing further ties in the Asia Pacific rim. The agreement is expected to enhance the UK’s approach to joining the CPTPP pact and further exploring opportunities with Canada, Mexico, Peru, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, Brunei, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Japan.
Not everyone is happy with the announcement, but when are they ever? You cant export moaning now, can you? Farmers think this may be bad for business and environmentalists want to include targets for emissions, but in reality, this agreement is designed to start the process of trade and recover from post-Brexit blues and skills shortages. This should be celebrated by both sides of the agreement and is the first opportunity for Brits to get access to real jobs, with no conditions.