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Singapore CEP Agreement Into Force January 1

Singapore Closer Economic Partnership Agreement To Come Into Force January 1


The way is now clear for the Singapore-New Zealand Closer Economic Partnership trade agreement, signed in Singapore on November 14, to come into force on January 1.

New Zealand Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton and Singapore High Commissioner Tan Keng Jin today exchanged diplomatic notes confirming that each country had completed all necessary domestic legal and constitutional procedures. This means that both countries can now bring the agreement into force.

Mr Sutton said it was a historic occasion for New Zealand.

"I am delighted to have ratified this Agreement. It represents a good deal for New Zealand, and a good deal for Singapore. I am sure it will result in a deepening of the already close trading relationship that exists between our two countries."

Mr Tan said Singapore was delighted to have been able to complete the agreement with New Zealand.

"This is our first bilateral agreement and I'm confident it will bring significant benefits to both our economies."

The two said the agreement reflected the commitment of both Singapore and New Zealand to maintaining the momentum of trade liberalisation in the Asia Pacific region.

The trade agreement is a comprehensive one covering goods, services investment and government procurement. On entry into force on 1 January 2001, it will eliminate tariffs on all goods traded between the two countries. The agreement also provides exporters from both countries with improved access opportunities to each others services markets, and will reduce compliance costs to New Zealand and Singaporean exporters through jointly agreed disciplines on standards.

Full details on the agreement are available on www.mfat.govt.nz and www.mti.gov.sg.

For more information, contact: CATHIE BELL on 04 4719855 or 025 998467

Office of Hon Jim Sutton


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