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WTO Agreement Big Step Forward for NZ Meat & Wool

WTO Agreement a Big Step Forward for NZ Meat & Wool

Meat & Wool New Zealand welcomes the significant step announced today by the WTO Member countries with an agreement for frameworks within the Doha Development Round.

Meat & Wool New Zealand Chairman, Jeff Grant said, “The WTO announcement today that agreement has been reached on frameworks for international trade reform including agriculture is heartening for all NZ farmers and exporters of meat and wool.”

“We have a real opportunity now to achieve a fairer and more open global trading environment for New Zealand’s agricultural exports.”

Significantly, the agreement by WTO Members locks in the elimination of export subsidies with an end date to be agreed at the next stage. In addition, the package offers possibilities of important gains for New Zealand through agreement to address other trade-distorting practices in world markets.

Mr Grant says, “Market access constraints and domestic support policies in many countries importing NZ meat and wool have cost us market share and added substantial cost to our export trade.

“We believe in an international trading system which is equitable and transparent. This gives NZ farmers the best opportunity to access world markets with unsubsidised New Zealand products that can sit alongside domestic and other imported products.”

“This Agreement gives us a good chance to achieve an environment where import tariffs can be significantly reduced – imagine the opportunities for countries like ours with a reputation for premium product quality and safety.

The WTO framework for agriculture encourages market forces to prevail in the global meat and wool industries. Consumer preference for products such as our meat and wool are likely to grow where prices to consumers can be reduced from the removal of tariffs and other costs to trade.

“Meat and Wool New Zealand congratulates our representatives in Geneva on this outcome. The government and its officials have contributed to a significant development in progressing the Doha Round.

“Now the next phase of negotiations can continue under this Framework. It will be important that we continue to support the endeavours of the NZ Government trade negotiators to influence outcomes which will offer the most benefit to New Zealand farmers”.

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