The agreement was signed in London by trade minister Damien O’Connor and the UK secretary of state for international trade Anne-Marie Trevelyan. Photo: Twitter/Damien O’Connor
New Zealand and the United Kingdom have signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that will boost GDP by up to $1 billion.
It was signed in London by trade minister Damien O’Connor and the UK secretary of state for international trade Anne-Marie Trevelyan.
“This is a gold-standard free trade agreement. Virtually all our current trade will be duty free from entry into force, including duty-free quotas for key products like meat, butter and cheese, helping to accelerate our economic recovery,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.
“As soon as it enters into force this deal will cut costs for exporters and create opportunities for New Zealand businesses to grow and diversify their trade,” O’Connor said.
“It’s estimated New Zealand goods exports to the UK will increase by over 50% through the agreement.
“Our largest export to the UK is wine – approximately $500 million. Overnight $14 million of wine tariffs will evaporate. New Zealand’s honey exporters will no longer face a $16 duty for every $100 worth of honey they send to the UK.
“Our dairy and red meat sectors will, for the first time since the 1970s, have tariff-free access that will grow through significant quotas until being fully liberalised. This is a commercially meaningful and excellent deal.
“We are aiming for this historic agreement to enter into force by the end of 2022, after both partners have ratified the agreement through our respective parliaments,” O’Connor said.
“New Zealand has not had tariff-free access into the UK since Britain joined the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1973 so this deal will deliver a major boost for sheep and beef farmers and exporters,” Meat Industry Association chief executive Sirma Karapeeva, said.
“This FTA realises our ambitions for a high quality agreement with greater access to an important market for New Zealand beef and lamb. It is also a win for New Zealand chilled meat exports because it will ensure the produce can reach the final customer quickly and in optimum condition.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand chief executive Sam McIvor said sheep and beef farmers will be pleased with the outcome of the FTA, which will further strengthen New Zealand’s already diverse export base.
“This FTA will unlock value in an important market for New Zealand farmers. New Zealand’s free range, pasture-raised farming systems are highly regarded by UK consumers and the perfect complement to the United Kingdom’s northern hemisphere production season.
“New Zealand and the United Kingdom producers share a strong commitment to high production standards, particularly in important areas such as food safety and quality, animal welfare and the environment.”
Federated Farmers national president and trade spokesperson Andrew Hoggard said with the world the way it is right now, this trade deal gives us reason to be reassured good things do still happen.
“With everything going on in Europe, in the hospitals and health centres, and even on the steps of our own Parliament, it’s reassuring to see this deal signed and sealed,” he said.