1. Introduction

This report contains the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties’ review of the following treaty actions:
Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of the French Republic regarding the Provision of Mutual Logistics Support between the Australian Defence Force and the French Armed Forces (Sydney, 2 May 2018);
Revised Agreement on Government Procurement (Annex to the Protocol Amending the Agreement on Government Procurement, adopted on 30 March 2012 (GPA/113)); and
Treaty between the Government of Australia and the Government of the United Arab Emirates concerning Transfer of Sentenced Persons (Canberra, 9 May 2018).
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.
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.
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.
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. None of the treaty actions examined in this report required a RIS.
The Committee takes account of these documents in its examination of the treaty text, in addition to other evidence taken during the inquiry program.
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/WTOGovernmentProcurement; and
This report also contains the Committee’s views on four minor treaty actions:
Transposition of Annex 2 (Product Specific Rules) of the Agreement Establishing the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area;
2018 Amendment to Annexes I and II of the International Convention against Doping in Sport;
2018 Amendments to the Annex to the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments; and
2018 Amendments to Annex VI of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as modified by the Protocol of 1978 relating thereto Resolution MEPC.301(72).

Conduct of the Committee’s review

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 1 February 2019. One submission was received for the inquiry into Defence Support-France, two for the inquiry into Prisoner Transfers-UAE, and five for the inquiry into WTO Government Procurement.
The Committee held public hearings into the treaty actions in Canberra on 11 February 2019. 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.
A list of submissions received for the inquiries is at Appendix A. A list of witnesses who appeared at the public hearings is at Appendix B.

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