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New Zealand Welcomes New WTO Members

Press Statement:

New Zealand Welcomes New WTO Members

New Zealand was one of 15 World Trade Organisation member nations to be chosen to welcome the accession of Cambodia and Nepal, which joined the WTO today.

Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton told the WTO meeting in Cancun, Mexico, that New Zealand very warmly congratulated Cambodia and Nepal on their joining the WTO.

“Not only are Cambodia and Nepal the two newest members of the WTO, they are also the first Least Developed Countries to conclude their WTO accession negotiations, and I warmly commend them on their achievement. Their accession is a sign of the commitment of ministers to the objectives made at Doha.

“New Zealand hopes their accessions will provide an example to other Least Developed Countries and encourage a new momentum to those LDC accessions still outstanding.”

Mr Sutton said Cambodia’s accession was an important step towards that country’s integration into the global economy.

“The economic reforms associated with Cambodia’s accession to the WTO complement the significant advances it has made in moving towards a more market-oriented economy. We were pleased to have supported Cambodia’s accession through targeted capacity-building assistance.”

Mr Sutton said New Zealand had been closely involved in Nepal’s joining the WTO. Two New Zealanders had chaired early meetings of the Nepal Working Party, he said.

“We also participated actively in the working party and were the first country to conclude bilateral market access negotiations with Nepal. Nepal continues to be an important market for New Zealand wool, and its accession to the WTO today provides a firm basis for this trade into the future.”

Cambodia and Nepal both have duty and quota free access to the New Zealand market, as least developed countries.

Cambodia and Nepal will be the 147th and 148th members of the WTO.


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