The Australia-Chile Free Trade Agreement is a trade agreement between Chile and Australia. It was signed on July 30, 2008 and came into effect in the first quarter of 2009.  The agreement was due to enter into force on 1 January 2009, but was postponed because Chile was unable to complete its ratification in time. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) continues to welcome the Australian industry`s view of the specific barriers they face in the Chilean market. Submissions don`t have to be long – a short email with details of the obstacles companies face in Chile would suffice. The FDFA will continue to accept bids during negotiations. For more information, see: www.dfat.gov.au/geo/chile/fta/index.html. According to the Australian government, the government hopes to use the agreement as a model for other free trade agreements with other countries.  Before the agreement was adopted, farmers and gardeners protested against the agreement in the Australian Parliament. Protesters say the deal would be less than Australian food producers by allowing cheap food from Chile.
 Simon Crean, Australia`s Trade Minister, responded to farmers` concerns by saying that tariffs were quite low or, in some cases, non-existent because of previous international trade agreements.  Mr. Truss said that the free trade ACCORD negotiations were a further step towards a broader strategic relationship with Chile and with Australia`s relations with Latin America in general. He said the government was committed to securing new trade and investment opportunities for Australian businesses by successfully concluding bilateral free trade negotiations. The agreement covers trade in goods, services and investment and is the most comprehensive free trade agreement Australia has negotiated with another agricultural producing country since the agreement on closer economic relations with New Zealand. Once adopted, the agreement requires Chile to remove tariffs on 91.9% of tariffs, which cover 96.9% of trade from Australia. Australia will reduce tariffs by 90.8%, which covers 97.1% of Chile`s trade. Until the sixth year of the agreement (2015), all tariffs are rejected, with the exception of the Chilean sugar tariff, which remains subject to the current “price range” system.  Tariffs in Australia, which will apply until 2015, will apply to the textile and clothing industry and table grapes.
In Chile, the agreement will protect the textile and clothing and other industrial products industry.  After Australian Trade Minister Warren Truss announced on July 18, 2007 that Australia had decided to continue negotiations for a free trade agreement with Chile, a first round of formal talks was held in Canberra between August 7 and 9. Australia`s major exports to Chile include coal, construction equipment, special machinery and vehicles, and the free trade agreement will support new opportunities for trade and investment to Australia in a number of sectors, led by The Chilean delegation led by Carlos Furche, Direcon`s Director General, and included representatives from the ministries of agriculture, finance, economy, transport and foreign affairs. Other sectors that will benefit are energy (coal, LNG, renewable energy), agriculture (milk, meat, sheep and beef, production technologies) and food and beverage products, including wine.