How the West Midlands could benefit from an Australia trade deal

The West Midlands’ powerhouse car manufacturing industry, and the region’s thriving services sector could all benefit from a new free trade deal with Australia, says the Department for International Trade.

Nearly £120m of cars and other road vehicles were exported from the West Midlands to Australia last year despite a 5% tariff.

The DoIT says the elimination of tariffs could increase UK competitiveness in the Australian market.

Meanwhile, some of the world-famous Mr Kipling cakes are made in Stoke, and could benefit from the removal of the 5% tariff on food and drink, and the reputation of Birmingham, and the wider West Midlands, as the “Workshop of the World” helped export more than £140m worth of industrial machinery to Australia in 2020.

Eliminating tariffs of up to 5% could benefit these industries, alongside the region’s global centre for aerospace design and manufacture.

More than 1,300 businesses in the West Midlands exported goods to Australia in 2020, worth more than £350m.

The top goods export from the West Midlands to Australia in 2020 was road vehicles – worth £118m.

The University of Warwick embarked on a partnership with Monash University, in Australia, in 2012.

“Much has been achieved through the Monash Warwick Alliance over the last ten years by combining the complementary strengths of two leading research-intensive universities. An FTA with Australia that provides effective frameworks and opportunities to facilitate collaboration on innovation and R&D across our economies could become a key enabler for our continued efforts to tackle complex global challenges,”said Professor Mike Shipman, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International) at Warwick and Alliance Academic Director for Warwick.

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