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


Trade Minister Denounces US Decision On Lamb


8 July 1999


Trade Minister Lockwood Smith has denounced the United States' decision to impose restrictions on imports of New Zealand lamb.

US President Bill Clinton today announced that he had approved an across-the-board tariff on all imports of lamb from New Zealand and Australia in response to the US sheep meat industry's application for safeguard action under Section 201 of the US Trade Act of 1974.

"It's bitterly disappointing that the US has chosen this approach," said Dr Smith.

"In applying these trade restrictions, the US has turned its back on a very constructive proposal from Meat New Zealand and its Australian counterpart, and allowed its long standing reputation as a supporter of free and open trade to be sullied by giving in to short-sighted protectionist sentiment.

"This decision will impose costs of approximately $24 million on New Zealand's lamb industry over the next three years. It will also limit New Zealand's legitimate trade expectations by choking off future prospects of growth with the heavy out-of-quota tariff.

"New Zealand's trade with the US is fair, and, according to the US International Trade Commission, has not caused actual injury to the US sheep meat industry. This unwise decision sends unfortunate signals, particularly in the year when the US will host the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Ministerial meeting which is expected to launch the next round of trade negotiations.

"The most frustrating aspect of today's decision is that everyone loses. New Zealand's farmers and exporters will lose, and the decision will do nothing to assist the serious challenges faced by the US sheep meat industry.

"New Zealand will not take today's decision lying down. My officials have been assessing the impact of today's decision on the New Zealand industry. We are actively considering our WTO options, and in consultation with the meat industry and Federated Farmers we will respond according to New Zealand's best interests.

"The US Government's unwise decision means that a WTO action is certain," Dr Smith concluded.


Detail of the decision attached.

Details of US Trade Restrictions on New Zealand Lamb

· Safeguard measures to apply for three years from 22 July 1999, with a review at 18 months;
· In-quota tariff of 9% on imports up to 31,851,151 kilograms, equivalent to the 1998 level of exports from New Zealand and Australia, in the first year of the remedy. In quota tariff to reduce to 6% in the second year and 3% in the third year;
· Quota levels would increase by 857,342 kilograms in both the second and third year of the restrictions;
· Out of quota tariff of 40 % in the first year, reducing to 32% in the second year and 24% in the third year;
· The 31,851,151 kilograms tariff rate quota will be allocated between Australia and New Zealand on the basis of their share of 1998 export sendings: 17,175,909 kilograms to Australia, and 14,531,818 kilograms to New Zealand;

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


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>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news