Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

TPP dairy deal 'not at a level we would currently like': Key

TPP dairy deal 'not at a level we would currently like', says Key

By Pattrick Smellie

June 22 (BusinessDesk) - The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact does not yet include an acceptable deal on access for New Zealand's most important exports, dairy products, with little more than a month to go before the controversial 12 nation trade deal could be concluded.

"I think the way I would describe it is there's a deal. It's probably not at the level that we would currently like," said Prime Minister John Key at his post-Cabinet press conference in Wellington. He was referring to comments last week by Trade Minister Tim Groser that negotiations on dairy access to the heavily protected US, Canadian and Japanese markets had "barely started."

A vote is due in the US Senate as early as mid-week to grant "fast-track" negotiating authority to US President Barack Obama to conclude the deal after a crucial vote in the Congress last Thursday left the Senate as the final hurdle.

Key took issue with Groser's comments to BusinessDesk last week that there was so far "no deal" on dairy products.

“It’s not to say that there’s a bad deal on dairy products, it’s more to say that there’s no deal," Groser said last week. "We’ve barely started. Phony negotiating positions have been put on the table but that doesn’t help a professional negotiator make a judgement as to where the landing zone is."

However, Key said: "From what I've seen at the moment, if in theory we froze time and concluded the deal as I see it, it's net positive for New Zealand. But it wouldn't be doing enough for dairy for us to be comfortable and we would like to do some more there. There are a lot of other sectors that would be very happy about it."

Key said his "gut instinct" was that the Senate would follow the US Congress, which by a narrow vote last week approved US President Barack Obama's so-called "fast-track" authority to negotiate a conclusion to the TPP deal. "We'll eventually get the chance to potentially get a deal before the summer recess" Key said.

Conventional wisdom among TPP negotiators is that the 12 nation deal, covering 40 percent of world trade, must be agreed by the end of July so that it doesn't drag beyond the US summer break, in August, after which the country's politics is likely to become dominated by jockeying for position ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

"It's not straightforward. You've still got people in the Senate who might vote against, but my gut instinct is it's very important to President Obama and they'll do their best to get there," said Key.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Fund For PPP Plans: Govt Embraces Targeted Rates To Spur Urban Infrastructure

The government's latest response to the Auckland housing shortage will see central government and private sector firms invest in 'special purpose vehicles' to fund essential roading, water and drains that Auckland Council can't fund without threatening its credit rating. More>>

ALSO:

Superu Report: Land Regulation Drives Auckland House Prices

Land use regulation is responsible for up to 56 per cent of the cost of an average house in Auckland according to a new research report quantifying the impact of land use regulations, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>

ALSO:

Fletcher Whittled: Fletcher Dumps Adamson In Face Of Dissatisfaction

Fletcher Building has taken the unusual step of dumping its chief executive, Mark Adamson, as the company slashed its full-year earnings guidance and flagged an impairment against Australian assets. More>>

ALSO:

No More Dog Docking: New Animal Welfare Regulations Progressed

“These 46 regulations include stock transport, farm husbandry, companion and working animals, pigs, layer hens and the way animals are accounted for in research, testing and teaching.” More>>

ALSO:

Employment: Most Kiwifruit Contractors Breaking Law

A Labour Inspectorate operation targeting the kiwifruit industry in Bay of Plenty has found the majority of labour hire contractors are breaching their obligations as employers. More>>

ALSO: