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Planned date for China FTA signing

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Trade

26 February 2008

Planned date for China FTA signing

With outstanding technical requirements and processes for the NZ-China Free Trade Agreement (FTA) on track for completion, plans are underway for New Zealand business involvement in activities around the signing date, Trade Minister Phil Goff announced today

“Finalising this FTA will be a significant achievement for New Zealand. We must make sure we take full advantage of the opportunities it will open up in China,” Mr Goff said.

“Being the first developed country to negotiate a comprehensive FTA with China will present New Zealand with a unique platform for profiling our businesses in China and for strengthening existing commercial relationships.”

“Neither the New Zealand or Chinese governments are in a position to formally approve the text for signature until all the technical issues have been dealt with. However, planning is now underway for a programme of activities, beginning with a New Zealand business delegation, centred around the signing ceremony and FTA-related events, planned to take place in Beijing from 6 – 9 April,” Mr Goff said.

“This FTA has been negotiated with the overriding objective of opening up economic opportunities for New Zealand business in China and to boost commercial ties with our now third largest trading partner.”
“We think it is important that the New Zealand business community have the opportunity to join with ministers and officials in Beijing to be a part of this historic event. We hope that members of the business community with important commercial links with China will be able to join us for this milestone event.”

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) was seeking expressions of interest from businesses who were interested in being part of the events and activities planned to take place in Beijing 6-9 April. NZTE would provide further details about the proposed trade delegation to Beijing shortly, Mr Goff said.

ENDS


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