Australia and the United States maintain extensive economic relations. Each is a strong proponent of more liberalized trade in the World Trade Organization. Australia, like the U.S., maintains relatively few trade barriers. U.S.-Australian economic ties have expanded steadily over the past several years, although some trade disputes have arisen, especially in regard to agriculture issues. In 2002, the two nations agreed to begin negotiations for a free trade agreement, which, if achieved, could further boost bilateral economic ties. This report will be updated as events warrant.