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Success in weathering external shocks

Trade Policy Review: New Zealand

Success in weathering external shocks helped by radical reforms

The WTO report, along with the policy statement of the Government of New Zealand, will serve as a basis for the third Trade Policy Review (TPR) of New Zealand by the Trade Policy Review Body of the WTO on 12 and 14 May 2003.

On-going reforms have markedly improved New Zealand's macroeconomic performance and made it one of the most open economies in the world. But despite relatively strong growth, per capita income growth has not met the authorities' expectations. Reliance on agricultural exports may be among the reasons, according to a report on the trade policies and practices of New Zealand, released May 14 by the WTO Secretariat.

The report notes that in an effort to raise per capita income to the top half of the OECD's ranking, the Government has introduced a new proactive policy to assist exporters, encourage innovation and attract foreign investment and skilled labour. The report also notes, however, a halt to privatizations and a freeze in the unilateral tariff-reduction programme.

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