Free-Trade Talks

The Australian government wants to begin talks for a free-trade agreement with the U.S. early next year which allows increase access to the world's largest economy.

Australian companies, from BHP Steel to News Corp., are going to receive additional A$4 billion ($2.2 billion) a year of sales through better access to the nation's second-biggest trading partner and largest source of foreign investment.

Trade between the two countries was worth about A$33.3 billion in 2001.

Free-trade is beneficial both for the US and Australian companies.