1. Introduction

1.1
This report contains the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties’ review of the following treaty actions:
Free Trade Agreement between Australia and the Republic of Peru (Canberra, 12 February 2018) (PAFTA);
The Agreement to terminate the Agreement between Australia and the Republic of Peru on the Promotion and Protection of Investments, Lima 7 December 1995 (IPPA);
Treaty between Australia and the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste Establishing their Maritime Boundaries in the Timor Sea (New York, 6 March 2018) (Timor Treaty Maritime Boundaries);
Framework Agreement Between Australia, of the one part and the European Union and its Member States, of the other part (Manila, 7 August 2017) (EU Framework Agreement);
Agreement between the Government of Australia and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization in relation to the functioning of the Australian Patent Office as an International Searching Authority and International Preliminary Examining Authority under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (WIPO Australian Patent Office);
Agreement on Scientific, Technological and Innovation Cooperation between the Government of Australia and the Government of the Italian Republic (Canberra, 22 May 2017) (Scientific Technical Cooperation: Italy); and
Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of the Federative Republic of Brazil for Cooperation on Science, Technology and Innovation (Canberra, 7 September 2017) (Scientific Technical Cooperation: Brazil).
1.2
The Committee’s resolution of appointment empowers it to inquire into any treaty to which Australia has become a signatory, on the treaty being tabled in Parliament.
1.3
The treaties, and matters arising from them, are evaluated to ensure that ratification is in the national interest, and that unintended or negative effects on Australia will not arise.
1.4
Prior to tabling, major treaty actions are subject to a National Interest Analysis (NIA), prepared by Government. This document considers arguments for and against the treaty, outlines the treaty obligations and any regulatory or financial implications, and reports the results of consultations undertaken with State and Territory Governments, Federal and State and Territory agencies, and with industry or non-government organisations.
1.5
A Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) may accompany the NIA. The RIS provides an account of the regulatory impact of the treaty action where adoption of the treaty will involve a change in the regulatory environment for Australian business. The Peru Free Trade Agreement was the only treaty examined in this report that required a RIS.
1.6
The Committee takes account of these documents in its examination of the treaty text, in addition to other evidence taken during the inquiry program.
1.7
Copies of the treaties considered in this report and the associated documentation may be obtained from the Committee Secretariat or accessed through the Committee’s website at:
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/PeruFTA/Treaty_being_considered;
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/TimorTreaty/Treaty_being_considered;
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/EUFrameworkAgreement/Treaty_being_considered;
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/WIPOPatentOffice/Treaty_being_considered;
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/ScienceTechnicalItaly/Treaty_being_considered;
https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Joint/Treaties/ScienceTechnicalBrazil/Treaty_being_considered.
1.8
This report also contains the Committee’s views on four minor treaty actions:
Protocol to Amend Annex 2 and Annex 5 of the Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement (Protocol);
Fifth Protocol Establishing the Prolongation of the Treaty between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Australia on the Presence of Australian Personnel in the Netherlands for the Purpose of Responding to the Downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 (Fifth Protocol);
Amendments to the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ACAP); and
Amendments to the Annex of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocols of 1978 and 1997 relating thereto Amendments to Annex VI (Designation of the Baltic Sea and the North Sea Emission Control Areas for NOx Tier III control) Resolution MEPC.286(71.

Conduct of the Committee’s review

1.9
The treaty actions reviewed in this report were advertised on the Committee’s website from the date of tabling. Submissions for the treaty actions were requested by the dates set out in Table 1.1. The number of submissions received for each inquiry is also listed.
Table 1.1:  Submission dates for treaty actions
Treaty action
Submission date
No of submissions received
Peru FTA
20.03.18
10
Timor Treaty Maritime Boundaries
20.03.18
12
EU Framework Agreement
20.03.18
6
WIPO Australian Patent Office
25.05.18
0
Scientific Technical Cooperation: Italy
25.05.18
1
Scientific Technical Cooperation: Brazil
25.05.18
1
1.10
The Committee held public hearings into the treaty actions as set out in Table 1.2. The transcripts of evidence from the public hearings may be obtained from the Committee Secretariat or accessed through the Committee’s website as listed above.
Table 1.2:  Public hearings for treaty actions
Treaty action
Public hearing dates
Peru FTA
07.05.18
Timor Treaty Maritime Boundaries
07.05.18
EU Framework Agreement
07.05.18
WIPO Australian Patent Office
18.06.18
Scientific Technical Cooperation: Italy
18.06.18
Scientific Technical Cooperation: Brazil
18.06.18
1.11
A list of submissions received for the inquiries is at Appendix A. A list of exhibits received for the inquiries is at Appendix B. A list of witnesses who appeared at the public hearings is at Appendix C.

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