The article outlines concerns about the possibility of including controversial investor-state dispute clauses (IDRS) in the agreement and contains quotes from AFTINET Convener, Dr. Patricia Ranald With the start of the Japanese Free Trade Agreement in 2015, employers will no longer have to offer jobs to local residents or prove that no vacancies could be filled before Japanese nationals eligible for 457 visas were employed.  JAEPA is the liberalizing bilateral trade agreement that Japan has ever entered into and gives Australian exporters, importers, investors and producers a considerable advantage over their international competitors. It will give Australian agricultural exports – many of which reside in Queensland – unprecedented market access and a competitive advantage. This groundbreaking agreement will significantly improve Australian businesses` access to the world`s third largest economy. The Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA) offers significant benefits to the Australian economy and facilitates business with Japan, our second largest trading partner. The agreement will strengthen and strengthen trade between two of the largest economies in the Asia-Pacific region. June 8, 2016: The Japan-Australia Free Trade Agreement had no provision for ISDS, but there was a clause that would trigger ISDS negotiations if Australia concluded another agreement with ISDS. The Guardian reports that the Free Trade Agreement between China and Australia has triggered secret talks to include ISDS in Japan`s free trade agreement. These were interrupted by early elections, but if the coalition government wins, they expect them to conclude the talks after the elections, the result will not be published until after the event. The ALP`s policy opposes ISDS and commits to reviewing ISDS in existing agreements.
The full text of the agreement, as well as useful information and information sheets from the FTA, are available on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. For specific questions, email JapanEPA@dfat.gov.au or call the DFAT North Asia Hotline on 02 6261 1888. Importers can contact the Home Office Some have concerns about the trade deal due to a lack of transparency, including rumours that there is a provision that makes it easier for Japanese companies to sue the Australian government, ABC Radio National PM reports. Japan is an economic heavyweight: it is the world`s third largest economy with a value of nearly $5 trillion in 2013 and Australia`s second largest trading partner. Two-way trade between Japan and Australia totalted $70.8 billion in 2013, or more than 10% of Australia`s total trade. The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs said: « The agreement will provide valuable preferential access to Australian exports and is by far the liberalizing trade agreement that Japan has ever concluded. Australia and Japan are natural partners with very complementary economies. This agreement will bring our economies and societies even closer together and strengthen a strong relationship for many years to come.  JAEPA is Australia`s second bilateral trade agreement with a major trading partner in North Asia after the signing of a free trade agreement with Korea in April 2014.
A free trade agreement is being negotiated with China. Together, these three economies account for more than half of Australia`s exports. Dr. Ranald points out that we are not in a position to see the text before the agreement is signed and argues that there should be a more democratic and transparent process for trade agreements. A number of concessions were guaranteed for Australian agricultural exporters, while Australian tariffs on electronics, white goods and cars were to be reduced. Negotiations on the agreement began under the Howard government in 2007. Abbott said: « This is the first time Japan has negotiated a comprehensive economic partnership agreement or a free trade agreement with a major economy, particularly a major economy