As the United Kingdom and Australia declared an in-principle agreement on essential elements of a Free Trade Deal, the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia (AACA) states it is in the last stages of negotiating a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) with its counterparts in the United Kingdom and New Zealand.
The agreement will assist registered architects in each nation to practice in the three nations.
As per the agreement, architects registered in any of these countries will see their credentials recognised when procuring registration in the other two countries.
For architects, the agreement once final will open substantial opportunities.
Says Statista.com, the value of construction output in the UK equalled £159.5 billion pounds ($A293.7 billion) in calendar 2019.
AACA CEO Kathlyn Loseby states that the value of the agreement should not be underestimated.
While COVID-19 has put a temporary stop to international travel and migration, they are moving ahead with this MRA so that when Australia’s borders re-open both their architects and their communities will be set to benefit from a more straightforward skills recognition procedure, Loseby stated.
Architects, she said, are among the most qualified professionals; and architecture ranks as a profession that thrives most with collaboration.
Recognising architects’ credentials on a worldwide level will open a new world of opportunity to change the lived experience of the built environment, she said.
The agreement is being negotiated as authorized by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).
It is supposed to be finished early next year.
Australia’s architecture profession maintains mutual recognition agreements which cover Japan, Singapore, Canada, New Zealand and about 30 individual states in the United States.
Loseby’s statement comes in the wake of Tuesday’s announcement from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison that the UK and Australia had attained an in-principal Free Trade Agreement.
That agreement dictates that the final FTA will feature provisions that will empower professionals from both nations who strive to labour in one other’s territory to see their qualifications recognised without facing unneeded cost and bureaucracy.
The agreement recognises that this will happen through collaboration between regulatory and accreditation bodies from both countries that will make possible the mutual recognition of professional qualifications.
In regards to the broader trade deal, Loseby said that the extension of ties with one of Australia’s closest allies and trading partners will lay the groundwork for further measures that will optimise the benefits for professionals in both countries.
She congratulates both the Australian and UK governments on striking this valuable agreement and thanks DFAT for the inclusive and constructive part they have created for them as part of this process, she said.
In addition to the advantages that trade liberalisation will guarantee for both producers and consumers, the FTA also provides many opportunities for many professionals, including architects, she said.
This new arrangement, she added, enhances the worldwide exchange of skills, expertise, collaboration and employment opportunities – something not experienced in the UK for years.