Free trade agreement talks
Federal Trade Minister Steve Ciobo will sound out the political and business appetite for an Australia-European Union free trade agreement when he visits Hungary, France and Switzerland in coming days.
In Budapest, Mr Ciobo will meet members of the Visegrad Group, comprising Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia and representing a combined GDP of more than $1 trillion.
He’ll then go on to Paris to meet with members of the French National Assembly and French business leaders, while in Davos, Switzerland, the minister will meet EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom at the World Economic Forum before heading into a meeting of the World Trade Organisation ministers in which he will promote an Australian-led e-commerce initiative.
Consensus was reached on starting the process towards an EU agreement in November 2015.
Mr Ciobo will also visit the United Arab Emirates to discuss trade in agriculture and education.