“The election of a Biden administration will have two fundamental markers for Australian industry,” Innes Willox, Chief Executive of the national employer association Ai Group said today.
“The incoming administration will through commentary, executive order and potentially legislation place a far greater emphasis on climate change and energy policy. The commitment to net zero emissions by 2050 will encourage other economies to move down this path. We are already seeing significant steps in recent times from other major trading partners such as Japan, South Korea, the UK and the European Union. Australia, led by industry and investor action, is already headed this way without making a formal target commitment.
“The other shift will be the opportunity for the US to re-engage with China on trade and broader economic issues. Efforts to take the heat out of differences on global trade through a change in tone will be welcomed but there should be no illusion that a Biden administration would seek to markedly soften the US’s stance on key issues. One clear take-out from the election is that China has few, if any, friends in the US Congress.
“The risk for Australia until now has been that we have been caught up as collateral damage in the US-China trade dispute. The future risk is that China may seek to substitute Australian exports in key sectors with goods from the US in an effort to reset their economic relationship.
“Australia has maintained a strong, diverse and cooperative bilateral economic relationship with the US for generations. There is no reason to think this will change with the change in the White House,” Mr Willox said.