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US Trade Announcement could reignite APEC

US Trade Announcement could reignite APEC and WTO Processes

The announcement that the US will become a full partner in the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership that exists between New Zealand, Singapore, Chile and Brunei (P4) is excellent news according to of the Wellington Regional Chamber of Commerce.

"This is a major breakthrough in New Zealand's quest for a free trade agreement with the US and it is likely to have greater indirect benefits beyond this," said Chamber CEO, Charles Finny.

"The US becoming a full partner in the Partnership is particularly relevant to New Zealand as the US already has FTAs with Chile and Singapore.

"It would put New Zealand back on a level footing with Australia and other countries in the US market.

"It shows that the politics is changing and that the US is increasingly willing to develop the bilateral trade relationship with New Zealand.

"The US's willingness to engage with this Asia Pacific grouping has longer term implications in that it could put trade liberalisation back on the APEC agenda. We note that Peru, Vietnam and Australia have already shown interest in the agreement.

"In the longer term it could also reignite the WTO negotiations which is the ultimate goal.

"Trade Minister Goff and his officials should be congratulated for achieving this milestone", Mr Finny concluded.


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