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Australia, Singapore conclude talks on bilateral digital economy accord
Kind: ICD What's New  Organization: Department of International Cooperation  Publish Date: 2020-04-01 14:02
Negotiations for the Australia-Singapore Digital Economy Agreement (DEA) have been successfully concluded, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Singaporean counterpart, Lee Hsien Loong, announced March 23.

The two leaders also witnessed the signing of two cooperation memorandums of understanding, on data innovation and artificial intelligence cooperation, which are part of series of seven MOUS under the DEA enabling enhanced collaboration on emerging technologies and common challenges.

The accord is groundbreaking in nature, establishing new global benchmarks for trade rules, and a range of practical cooperative initiatives, to decrease barriers to digital trade and create an environment in which businesses and consumers of the two sides are able to take part in and benefit from digital trade and digitalization of the economy.

The DEA will upgrade the digital trade arrangements between the two sides under the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Australia-Singapore Free Trade Agreement, which are already among the most ambitious in the world. For example, it provides more robust rules that ensure businesses, including in the financial sector, can transfer data across borders and will not be required to build or use data storage centers in either jurisdiction.

In addition, the agreement delivers a series of new trade rules as well as a comprehensive framework for bilateral cooperation to help firms and consumers capitalize on the digital economy.

The series of memorandums of understanding signed between the two sides in connection with the DEA include MOUs on data innovation, cooperation on artificial intelligence, trade facilitation, collaboration on electronic invoicing, electronic certification cooperation, personal data protection cooperation, and collaboration in the field of digital identity.

Sources: Regulation Asia, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
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Update: 2020-04-23
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