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McCully to Europe for EU talks, bilateral visits

Hon Murray McCully
Minister of Foreign Affairs

12 December 2009

      Media Statement    
McCully to Europe for EU talks, bilateral visits

Foreign Minister Murray McCully heads to Europe on Sunday for six-monthly European Union consultations, and bilateral meetings in Sweden and Russia.

“My talks with the EU will be the first ministerial consultations since the Lisbon Treaty entered into force, and it will be an important opportunity to reinforce our relations with Europe,” Mr McCully said.

“I will also be reviewing progress in exploring a possible comprehensive formal agreement between New Zealand and the EU, to provide the basis for a deeper and more long-term relationship.”

The consultations are in Stockholm, as Sweden currently holds the EU Presidency. While there, Mr McCully will meet with Swedish Trade Minister Eva Björling. He then travels to Moscow to hold talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

“Russia is a major European and Asian power, so the relationship is an important one for New Zealand. Russia is also a market with growing potential for us,” Mr McCully said. 

Annual trade between New Zealand and Russian has nearly doubled in the last four years and is now valued at $222 million.

Mr McCully’s discussions in Stockholm and Moscow will cover a range of regional and global topics, including the Pacific, Asia, Afghanistan, the Middle East, and climate change.




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