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Agenda for Costello – Cullen bilateral

14 February 2005

Agenda for Costello – Cullen bilateral

Progress toward creating a single Australasian economic market will dominate the agenda when Australian Treasurer Peter Costello and Finance Minister Michael Cullen meet in Wellington on Thursday, 17 February.

The two ministers agreed in 2003 that the importance of the trans-Tasman relationship and the policy activity around it justified an annual bilateral and at last year’s meeting promoted the single economic market objective.

“Officials are engaged in a significant work programme around better integrating the two economies. This work is spread across a wide range of areas and is at various stages of completion,” Dr Cullen said.

Issues for discussion include: finding a path forward in trans-Tasman banking regulation; responding to the Australian Productivity Commission report recommendations for enhanced policy dialogues, coordination and information exchange between the two competition and consumer protection regimes but with separate regulators for the time being; moving toward mutual recognition of securities offers so that issuers can use a single disclosure document in both countries; consideration of the Trans-Tasman Accounting Standards Advisory Group’s work in aligning accounting standards with the ultimate aim that a company active in both jurisdictions would need to prepare only one set of accounts; consideration of a proposal that officials initiate work on the possibility of adding an investment chapter to CER.

Consistent with previous practice, Mr Costello and Dr Cullen will host a joint press conference at the conclusion of their talks. This will be held in the Beehive Theatrette from 4pm to 4.30pm.


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