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Website success demonstrates huge interest in FTA

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Trade

09 April 2008

Website success demonstrates huge interest in New Zealand-China FTA – Goff

The new Government website containing information on New Zealand’s Free Trade Agreement with China has received a huge amount of interest in its first 48 hours of operation, Trade Minister Phil Goff said today.

“The all-of-government ChinaFTA.govt.nz Website went live shortly after I signed the agreement alongside Commerce Minister Chem Deming in Beijing on Monday afternoon,” Phil Goff said.

“Over the next 48 hours up to Wednesday afternoon, the Website registered around 31,000 hits. This is evidence of the enormous interest shown by New Zealand businesses to make the most out of this historic deal.

“This level of interest ranks alongside the unanimous enthusiasm shown by 190 businessmen and women who travelled to China to witness Monday’s signing. It is a reflection of the huge potential China offers as a market for New Zealand goods and services. The business delegation was the largest ever to leave New Zealand and the group recognised that the deal has clear benefits for New Zealand.

“Ngai Tahu Holdings for example has described the deal’s ‘amazing potential’ and China as a ‘land of opportunity’. The company is a large exporter, selling more than $100 million of live lobster to China annually,” Phil Goff said.

“The Website is proving to be a very useful tool. It provides detail on the FTA, including the text of the document itself, the National Interest Analysis, fact sheets and key outcomes for New Zealand. It also contains links to all New Zealand Government agencies that are connected to doing business in China.

“A tariff finder tool on the site allows people to view tariff rates on 7000 different items – the current rates and the eventual rates that will result from the FTA. This tool has been very well received.

“Since the FTA was signed, New Zealand has received big publicity across China. The signing and significance of the agreement has made the front pages of many of the metropolitan newspapers and been broadcast on television channels China-wide. This type of exposure will be invaluable to New Zealand businesses as they seek to capitalise on the head start they have gained over their competitors,” Phil Goff said.

ENDS

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