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GATS offer gets it right

Media release 3 April 2003

GATS offer gets it right

The Government's initial offer in the current round of negotiations under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) has got the balance right, according to Business NZ.

Chief Executive Simon Carlaw says the Government has made a major step towards freer trade while also allaying unfounded fears that GATS would put at risk publicly funded education or health care services.

"The offer includes a range of new areas in which New Zealand offers other nations the ability to trade in services here, in return for New Zealand firms being be able to trade in those areas internationally."

"These areas include design services, engineering services, management consulting, postal and courier services, and environmental consultancy services - all areas where Kiwi businesses have the skills to earn significant new international revenue.

"Removing barriers to New Zealand exports of services is just as critical to growing more and better paying jobs here as removing barriers to our agricultural or manufactured exports," Mr Carlaw said.

ENDS

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