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WTO Breakdown Threat To NZ Exports

16 September, 2003

Media Release

For immediate Release

WTO Breakdown Threat To NZ Exports

The breakdown of the World Trade Organisation talks in Cancun and the resultant disbanding without agreement on the reduction of agricultural subsidies poses a very real threat to New Zealand’s exporters, according to Export New Zealand.

National vice president David Binning said today that New Zealand’s exporters would bear the brunt of the continuation of tariff protection mechanisms in New Zealand’s major markets, combined with the normal international currency and trading pressures.

“Our major agriculturally based export industries are being forced to compete in markets where subsidies promote mediocrity in efficiency of production because of the subsidy levels paid, particularly in Europe, the USA and Japan,” he said.

“Our exporters continue to battle to compete in tariff-protected markets, where industries in those markets remain protected as a result of the WTO talks disbanding.

“Export New Zealand will support any action taken by the Government that will New Zealand exporters,” Mr Binning said.

This applied in particular to any improvements that could be made to New Zealand’s competitive position and the prices the productive sector receives in the global market place, he said.


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