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Taiwan, New Zealand move closer to trade pact

Taiwan, New Zealand move closer to trade pact

Taiwan and New Zealand are taking the next step in their efforts to sign a bilateral economic cooperation agreement (ECA), moving now to a second feasibility study, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said in a press release Thursday.

The announcement came one month after Taipei and Wellington launched the first stage of a two-part feasibility study, with each country assessing the benefits of inking an ECA.

An initial report showed that an ECA would favor both markets, therefore, Taiwan and New Zealand are now entering the last stage of evaluation, where they will conduct a joint feasibility study, the ministry said.

The study will be carried out as fast as possible, once representatives from both sides agree on a date, the MOFA said.

"Once the joint feasibility study is completed, we will start the negotiation process, which is where we are now with Singapore," MOFA Deputy Spokesman Steve Hsia said.

Taiwan and Singapore began talks late last year on a possible economic pact, which is being called an Agreement between Singapore and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu on Economic Partnership.

ENDS

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