New Zealand and China Trade Agreement
New Zealand and China have a special relationship when it comes to trade. In 2008, the two countries signed the China-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which eliminated tariffs on many goods and services. Since then, bilateral trade between the two countries has grown rapidly, making China New Zealand`s largest trading partner.
However, it`s been over a decade since the FTA was signed, and both countries have evolved since then. That`s why, in 2020, New Zealand and China started negotiations to upgrade their existing FTA. The aim was to modernize the agreement and expand the scope of cooperation on a wide range of issues, including environmental protection, e-commerce, and agriculture.
The upgraded FTA was finally signed on November 26, 2021, by New Zealand`s Trade Minister Damien O`Connor and China`s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao. The upgraded agreement builds on the existing FTA and adds new provisions to reflect the changing economic landscape and emerging issues.
One of the most significant changes in the upgraded FTA is the elimination of tariffs on 97% of New Zealand`s goods exported to China. This will provide a significant boost to New Zealand`s economy, particularly for its agricultural sector. Under the agreement, China will also reduce tariffs on New Zealand`s dairy products, including infant formula and liquid milk.
Additionally, the upgraded FTA includes provisions on sustainable development and environmental protection. The agreement acknowledges the importance of sustainable development and sets out a framework for both countries to cooperate on issues such as climate change, biodiversity conservation, and marine protection.
E-commerce is another area that has been addressed in the upgraded FTA. The agreement promotes cooperation between the two countries on e-commerce regulation and cybersecurity. It also includes provisions to protect the privacy of personal information and consumer rights.
The upgraded FTA also covers the investment sector. The agreement includes provisions to protect investors` rights and promote transparency in investment activities. It also provides a mechanism for resolving disputes between investors and government.
In conclusion, the upgraded FTA between New Zealand and China is an important milestone in their bilateral relationship. It reflects the changing economic landscape and emerging issues, such as sustainable development and e-commerce. The agreement will provide a significant boost to New Zealand`s economy, particularly for its agricultural sector. It also provides a framework for cooperation between the two countries on a wide range of issues, which will strengthen their relationship in the years to come.