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Luxton Welcomes Spreadable Butter Moves

June 10


Food and Fibre Minister John Luxton has welcomed reports that the European Commission has re- allowed New Zealand spreadable butter into the European Union under its butter quota.

"These reports are very good news for New Zealand farmers. It will improve farmer incomes over time and can only increase opportunities to market quality New Zealand dairy products into the lucrative European market."

"This result also vindicates the action taken by New Zealand to the WTO.

The WTO process is robust and fair and that is why New Zealand is committed to it. The observance of WTO principles has clearly paid dividends in this case. New Zealand is committed to free trade because trade restrictions harm consumers and producers."

"Europeans will soon again enjoy the best spreadable butter in the world. Once people try spreadable butter they are almost always hooked. I know I am!" "The ability to develop new world-beating added value products like spreadable butter is what will stand our primary industries in good stead in the future," Mr Luxton concluded.

MEDIA STATEMENT

10 June 1999

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Trade Minister Welcomes Continuing Export Growth

"The steady upward trend in our exports demonstrates that New Zealand exporters continue to expand their business in competitive world markets," according to Trade Minister Lockwood Smith.

Overseas Merchandise Trade Figures released today confirm the upward trend in export growth, up 2.8 percent from the same period last year.

The statistics continue to be distorted by one-off purchases of large aircraft worth more than half a billion dollars which have impacted on the trade balance figures," said Dr Smith.

"These figures demonstrate that the New Zealand economy's recovery is robust. The private sector is willing to make significant capital investments to secure their future competitiveness, and our exporters are continuing to increase the value of exports in our offshore markets.

"Today's figures also lend weight to the National-led Government's approach to economic management, and its commitment to lower barriers to trade through bilateral negotiations, APEC and the World Trade Organisation.

"The current threat of safeguard action against New Zealand lamb exports to the US demonstrates the ongoing threat of protectionism, which would severly limit our ability to enjoy ongoing export growth.

"This Government will continue to make every effort to reduce and remove barriers to trade in order to create jobs, and provide a higher standard of living for New Zealand families," Dr Smith concluded.

ENDS

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