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

 

Vanuatu joins PACER Plus Pacific trade deal, PNG close

Vanuatu joins PACER Plus Pacific trade deal, PNG may be close

By Pattrick Smellie

Sept. 7 (BusinessDesk) - Support for the vexed Pacific area trade agreement known as PACER-Plus has taken a significant step forward with Vanuatu becoming a signatory to the deal after declining to participate when 11 other countries concluded the eight-year negotiation in June.

“Vanuatu wasn’t ready to sign in June when we concluded the agreement," said Trade Minister Todd McClay in a statement. "However, we've been working closely with them and I am pleased the Cabinet of Vanuatu has agreed to sign PACER Plus today."

He expressed optimism that Papua New Guinea, another hold-out against a deal, might also soon sign on, following the recent appointment of a new trade minister there.

He had spoken to Rimbink Pato, PNG's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, who "indicated PNG is very interested in joining PACER-Plus," McClay told BusinessDesk. "I'm optimistic we can get PNG on board quite quickly."

However, there was little sign of movement from Fiji, which has yet even to file a formal market access offer, a key element for any country seeking to enter an international trade agreement.

Australia, the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu are the current signatories.

Several small northern Pacific nations, all with traditional ties to and special trade arrangements with the US, are also expected to join the deal once issues relating to their US relationships are worked through.

The agreement is intended as much as a development as a trade-boosting arrangement, although critics charge that the trade elements of the agreement expose weak Pacific economies to too much competitive pressure for local industries to withstand.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Fuel Leak: Refinery Prepares To Repair Damaged Pipeline

Refining NZ has confirmed that it is to start repairs on a section of its multi-product fuel pipeline which was shut down following a jet fuel leak last Thursday. More>>uption.htm">More>>

ALSO:

Expert Reaction: Cassini's Grand Saturn Finale

After a 20 year mission, NASA's spacecraft Cassini will meet its demise this week by plunging into Saturn's atmosphere and burning up. More>>

ALSO:

Jurisdiction: Court Rejects Cathay Unit's Retirement Age Of 55 For Pilots

The Supreme Court has backed two Auckland-based Cathay Pacific pilots who claimed local law meant they couldn't be forced to retire at 55. More>>

ALSO:

Supreme Court: AFFCO Loses Lockout Appeal

The essential question in the appeal was whether those who presented themselves for work at the beginning of the 2015/2016 season were at that time “employees” for the purposes of the lockout provision... This Court has unanimously dismissed the appeal. More>>

China FTA: NZ Govt Agrees On Negotiating Mandate For Upgrade

The New Zealand government has agreed a negotiating mandate for the upgrade of the free trade agreement with China, with a goal of $30 billion of two-way trade by 2020. More>>

ALSO: