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New Investment Rules Welcomed

Treasurer Bill English welcomed today's announcement of changes to Trans-Tasman investment rules, and said New Zealand businesses would benefit by being able to invest more freely in Australia.

"New Zealand businesses increasingly see Australia and New Zealand as one market, so they will benefit by being able to invest more freely in Australia. These initiatives will remove screening requirements for more than half the investment proposals from New Zealand into Australia," said Mr English.

Under the joint Prime Ministerial Communiqué on CER released today, Australia will increase its existing foreign investment business acquisition threshold to $A50 million and change its rules to make it easier for New Zealanders to invest in Australian residential real estate.

"The commitment announced today to explore the scope for further harmonisation of our business regimes is also an important step forward. New Zealand companies are doing more and more business in Australia and these changes will lower the costs of doing business in the other country. Changes to streamline customs procedures will also help reduce costs to exporters.

"CER has succeeded far beyond what was initially imagined. Exports are the key to New Zealand's continued growth and the experience provided through CER has helped many New Zealand businesses get a foot hold into wider export markets.

"I look forward to CER, and other agreements like it, continuing to help New Zealand businesses selling their products overseas," said Mr English.

Ends



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