Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb will visit Paris, France and Frankfurt, Germany from 5-8 May to pursue Australia’s ambitious trade and investment agenda in key centres of Europe.

In Paris, Mr Robb will attend the Ministerial Council Meeting of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and meet with OECD Secretary-General, Mr Angel Gurria, and World Trade Organisation (WTO) Director-General, Mr Roberto Azevêdo.

Mr Robb will advocate the benefits of lowering trade costs to help business both large and small participate in global markets and supply chains, including through competitive services sectors.

“In Australia we are committed to leading by example with a key objective being to displace government from the centre of economic activity and to replace it with robust growth led by the private sector. Globally, the objective of governments should be reducing business costs and easing regulatory burdens.

“In Europe I will be advocating for growth enhancing policy choices, including the opening of services markets, streamlined customs procedures, more efficient regulation, higher quality trade infrastructure and also the elimination of tariffs and the dismantling of other non-tariff barriers,” Mr Robb said.

Mr Robb will also chair an informal gathering of WTO Trade Ministers. Ministers will discuss ways to build on the outcomes agreed at the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali last year and the future of multilateral trade negotiations.

“It is in all of our interest to advance multilateral trade liberalisation in the WTO and to recognise its critical role in setting and fostering global trading rules. We need to guide the WTO Director-General as he looks for the best ways to achieve progress,” he said.

Mr Robb will also host events with business CEOs based in France and Germany, which are in the top five of world economies and major investors in Australia.

“My visit will be focused on deepening our bilateral trade and investment relationships, promoting Australia as an investment destination to industry, and reinforcing the message to international investors that the new Coalition Government has an ambitious private-sector growth agenda and is open for business to Europe,” Mr Robb said.

Media enquiries

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