Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


New Zealand welcomes US tariff proposal


New Zealand welcomes US tariff proposal

The United States decision to propose eliminating all non-agricultural tariffs by 2015 would inject significant momentum into current World Trade Organisation negotiations, Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton said today.

He said New Zealand strongly welcomed the American proposal, which was closely aligned with New Zealand's own WTO proposal earlier this month for a 'tariff free future'.

"The US has demonstrated real leadership in putting forward this proposal, showing again its commitment to an ambitious WTO round outcome, even if that means lowering protection in sensitive sectors."

Mr Sutton said the US proposal boosted prospects for a big overall result from the round, which would be overwhelmingly in New Zealand's interest.

"Estimated annual tariff savings for New Zealand forestry, fisheries, and manufactured products exporters would be at least NZ$185 million if WTO members agreed with the New Zealand and US proposals.

"Gains to agriculture from a big overall outcome from the Round have been estimated at NZ$1000 million."

Mr Sutton said the US proposal would also help to reassert the leadership of the multilateral trading system.

"Many countries are currently engaged in one or more FTA negotiations, which can offer liberalisation in specific markets over a shorter timeframe. But it's important the expanding FTA web is used as a building block for the first and best option of broader liberalisation in the WTO, not a substitute."

Mr Sutton said he had been encouraged by the support for tariff elimination from exporters worldwide since the launch of New Zealand's initiative.

"I've been heartened by the support from the forestry, fisheries, and manufacturing sectors in New Zealand. And I welcome the support for New Zealand's proposal from the United States National Foreign Trade Council. Even the American Apparel and Footwear Association has expressed its support for tariff elimination."

Mr Sutton said if WTO members agreed to tariff elimination on non-agricultural goods, reduction would start on negotiated timeframes from 2006 at the earliest.

"This means it would have no impact on the government's decision to freeze current tariff levels until 2005, contrary to statements made by some New Zealand commentators," he said.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news