Article 21.1 of the United States-Australia Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA) establishes a Joint Committee to supervise the implementation of the Agreement and to review the trade relationship between the Parties. The Committee is made up of governmental representatives, Co-Chaired by the United States Trade Representative and the Minister of Trade of Australia or their designees. The Joint Committee is to meet regularly on a yearly basis to review the general functioning of the Agreement, review and consider specific matters related to its operation, consider and adopt amendments, facilitate avoidance and settlements of disputes arising under the Agreement, issue interpretations of the Agreement; consider ways to enhance trade relations among the Parties; and take any other actions agreed by the Parties.
Several Committees have been formed. The Committee on Agriculture met on 3 March 2006 in Washington, D.C. The Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Committee and the Standing Technical Working Group on Animal and Plant Health (STWGAPH) met on 14 February 2005 and on 6 March 2006. The Working Group on Professional Services (WGPS) met in June 2005 and March 2006. The Financial Services Committee met in June 2005 in Washington D.C. The Joint Working Group on Competition Law and Anticompetitive Business Practices (JWG) met in 2005 through videoconference. The Medicines Working Group (MWG) met on 13 January 2006.
The first meeting of the Joint Committee took place on 6 March 2006. Committees and Working Groups are to continue to meet in 2006 and a review of the implementation of the Government Procurement Chapter is to take place by January 2007. The Joint Committee is expected to meet next in 2007.