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NZUS Director To Visit Washington

16 January 2006


NZUS Council Executive Director To Visit Washington

The Executive Director of the New Zealand United States Council, Stephen Jacobi, will visit Washington DC 23-29 January.

“This is my first visit to the US in my new role at the Council. It provides an opportunity to continue to develop the close working relationship between the Council and its Washington-based counterpart, the US NZ Council, as well as the New Zealand Embassy”, said Mr Jacobi.

“With the US NZ Council I will be discussing plans for a high level partnership event we are organising for this coming April in Washington involving business, government and academic leaders from both countries.”

Mr Jacobi’s visit takes place after the positive comments made by visiting US Senator John McCain about a possible free trade agreement with New Zealand. Senator McCain was quoted as saying that a free trade agreement would be beneficial for both countries.

“We welcome this public expression of support from such a high ranking US politician and we in the Council are ready to play our part in making this happen” said Mr Jacobi.

Mr Jacobi’s programme will include meetings with officials at the State Department, the US Trade Representative’s Office and Congress and with business supporters of the US NZ Council.

Mr Jacobi’s visit is made possible with the support of United Airlines and Air New Zealand. He returns to New Zealand on 31 January.

About the NZUS Council

The New Zealand United States Council is a non partisan body funded by both business and the Government to promote New Zealand’s broader relationship with the US.

Two way trade with the US is valued at over $8 billion. The US is New Zealand’s second export market overall and the largest export market for dairy products, beef, and seafood. The US is New Zealand’s second largest purchaser of manufactured goods and among the top five markets for sheepmeat, forest products, fruit and vegetables. The US is the second largest source of imports and the third largest source of tourists who in the year to March 2005 spent $615 million (the highest daily spenders). The US contributes around 12 percent of all foreign direct investment.

The New Zealand Government, supported by the private sector, continues to make its case for a free trade agreement with the United States.

ENDS

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