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Phil Goff to leave for Defence and Trade meetings

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Trade


29 May 2008


Phil Goff to leave for Defence and Trade meetings in five countries

Trade and Defence Minister Phil Goff is to visit five countries over 14 days where he will discuss defence issues and progress in bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations.

Mr Goff leaves tonight for Chile, Peru, France, the UK and the USA.

“In Santiago, I will meet Chile's new Minister of Economy, Mr Hugo Lavados, to discuss advances in commercial relationships and partnerships between Chilean and New Zealand businesses, and the potential for increased trade in education and tourism services to Chile,” Mr Goff said.

“I will attend an APEC Trade Ministers meeting on Saturday and Sunday (31 May-1 June) while in Peru. On the agenda will be APEC's trade liberalisation agenda, including considering the possibility of a Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP). I will also hold bilateral meetings with a number of Trade Ministers from APEC member Economies.

“In Paris (3-5 June), I will attend the annual Ministerial Council Meeting for the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Discussions will include the economics of climate change, sovereign wealth funds, trade liberalisation and escalating global food prices and food security.

“Also, I plan to attend an informal gathering of Ministers to discuss how we can progress the WTO Doha round negotiations.

“I will also visit the Eurocopter facility in the south of France, where New Zealand's eight NH90 helicopters are being built, to view progress.

“While in the UK, I will meet UK Defence Secretary Des Browne to discuss a range of Defence and Disarmament matters.

“I will also visit London Mayor Boris Johnson to extend New Zealand’s strong support for a statue of Kiwi Battle of Britain hero Sir Keith Park being erected in Trafalgar Square.

“Finally, the visit to Washington (8-10 June) includes meetings with key members of the US Administration and Congress with responsibility for trade, agriculture and Defence. I will deliver a speech to the Peterson Institute of International Economics on Asia-Pacific Regionalism.

“This visit will build on the positive developments in the bilateral relationship with the United States and reinforce the value of New Zealand as a partner in advancing shared interests, with an emphasis on our respective roles in the Asia-Pacific region,” Phil Goff said.

ENDS

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