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


Three day visit by Goff to Washington

Three day visit by Goff to Washington

Foreign Minister Phil Goff completed a visit to Washington this week after wide-ranging discussions with members of the second Bush Administration. He called on the State Department, the Pentagon, the National Security Council and the Directorate of National Intelligence.

Among those that Mr Goff met during his visit were Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick, Deputy Secretary of Defence-designate Gordon England, Deputy National Security Adviser JD Crouch, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and the Pacific Christopher Hill, and Ambassador John Negroponte, recently appointed to the new position of Director of National Intelligence. He also met members of Congress, and addressed a meeting of the US/New Zealand Council.

“Discussions included security, trade and international issues of concern to both countries, and cooperation between us. Terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction remain key foreign policy concerns for New Zealand and the US. We discussed the current situation in Iraq and Afghanistan. I was able to brief new members of the Administration on New Zealand’s contributions to reconstruction in Afghanistan and steps being taken in the Pacific and South East Asia against terrorist threats. The Government’s recent decision to significantly increase defence spending for peacekeeping and security operations was acknowledged and welcomed.

“Developments in the Asia Pacific region, in particular the situation in North Korea and the shared concern about North Korea’s nuclear programme were discussed. I was briefed on the efforts the US has made to persuade the DPRK to return to the Six Party talks. I outlined New Zealand’s efforts, most recently during our Ambassador’s visit to North Korea last week, to emphasise to the North Koreans our and the region’s growing concerns about its nuclear programme,” Mr Goff said.

“We also discussed steps to create new regional institutions such as the East Asia Summit, and New Zealand’s interest in such institutions being inclusive and outward looking.

“I indicated the importance New Zealand attaches to the US’s engagement in the Asia Pacific region and acknowledged the role the US had played in tsunami relief operations in Southeast Asia earlier this year.

“The talks also covered New Zealand’s case for a Free Trade Agreement with the United States. The Administration and Congress are currently preoccupied with passage of the Central American Free Trade Agreement through Congress. I indicated our confidence that there was support for such an agreement both in Congress and in the corporate sector. The recent launching of a New Zealand Caucus in Congress with now over 60 members has given a boost to New Zealand’s case. New US Trade Representative, Robert Portman, was a member of the Caucus before resigning from Congress to take up his new post. Ongoing support by the US Chamber of Commerce and New Zealand’s listing by the National Association of Manufacturers as one of the five key countries with which it wanted an FTA negotiated have also been helpful”, Mr Goff said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


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>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news