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New Trans-Pacific Economic Partnership Welcomed

Meat & Wool New Zealand welcomes new Trans-Pacific Economic Partnership

3rd June 2005

Meat & Wool New Zealand welcomed the announcement by the Government today of the conclusion of negotiations for a trade agreement between New Zealand, Chile, Singapore and Brunei; the so-called "Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership".

"Economic partnerships and free trade agreements are an important means of liberalising agricultural trade," says Trade and Market Development General Manager Anne Berryman.

"Although current meat and wool trade interests with the countries concerned are not New Zealand's most significant internationally, we support the Government's efforts to utilise opportunities to build trade linkages in the region."

"New Zealand has a solid history of trade in meat products with Singapore, already enjoying duty free access under the New Zealand-Singapore Closer Economic Partnership, with exports of beef in the 2003-04 seasonal year totalling just over NZ$17 million FOB," says Berryman.

"The trade with Chile has so far not been significant, which is perhaps not surprising given that Chile is itself a meat and wool producer. Nonetheless, the arrangements negotiated with Chile show the potential for bilateral trade agreements to achieve real improvements in market access and we urge the Government to pursue the highest level of ambition in its free trade deals."

"At the same time achieving comprehensive liberalisation of agricultural trade through the WTO Doha Round must remain the Government's number one priority," she says.

Small volumes of raw wool exports have occurred over recent years to Chile and Singapore.

ENDS

http://www.meatandwoolnz.com

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