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Mexican tariff reductions benefit NZ and Mexico

Mexican tariff reductions benefit NZ and Mexico

New Zealand and Mexico will benefit from unilateral tariff reductions in Mexico, Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton said today.

Mr Sutton said that New Zealand was included in a decree gazetted in Mexico which unilaterally reduces import tariffs on goods from countries that do not have a trade agreement with Mexico. The decree came into force on December 31 last year.

The tariffs on apples reduce from 23 per cent to 20 per cent; on kiwifruit from 22 per cent to 20 per cent; and wine from 30 per cent to 20 per cent. Products under the HS 3501 tariff line ? such as caseinate - will drop from 18 per cent to 15 per cent. Mussels, tripe, bovine embryos, jams, jellies, food preparations, untreated sheep and lamb skins, wood, and industrial products will also be affected.

The tariff reduction is part of a package by Mexico's President Vicente Fox to increase national competiveness.

President Fox said in a statement that the decrease in tariff duties would apply to 60 per cent of the value of taxed final imports from countries Mexico did not have a trade agreement with, and would result in lower costs for national producers and consumers.

Mr Sutton said the move by Mexico was a good example of a developing economy recognizing the benefits to itself of a more open economy.

"This was recognised in New Zealand in the mid-1980s, and tariff reductions here resulted in large and ongoing improvements in the welfare of New Zealanders.

"The same will happen in Mexico. This tariff reduction will mean cheaper goods for Mexican consumers, and for New Zealand, it will be positive as our quality products will be more affordable for Mexican consumers, leading hopefully to an increase in trade between us."


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