The Antipodean (Free Trade) Approach

Related entries: General, Trading

As the EU and US battle with China over cheap shoes, textiles and auto tariffs, New Zealand is busy negotiating a free trade agreement. The Dominion Post reports that they are now into their 9th round of talks, and that progress is being made. Phil Goff, the Trade Minister, is reported to have said he would remove all tariffs, while getting wide-ranging access for service providers in China. He added:

    “China has never before negotiated a comprehensive and high-quality trade agreement with a developed country. It is new territory for them and it will require some persuasion.”

Issues still needing agreement include access for New Zealand’s agricultural and services sectors, while the Chinese are asking for New Zealand to open up to Chinese “temporary skilled workers”. New Zealand is also looking for assurance of “most favoured nation status” so that it does not get overtaken by others after it has done all the work in breaking down the free-trade door.

No doubt negotiators on both sides have a tough job here, but it is refreshing to see that while some are talking up free trade abroad – but bowing to political pressure at home – others are experimenting with a more open and innovative approach.

See news source:

    Hard road ahead in China talks – Wellington,New Zealand
    By SUE ALLEN. New Zealand is emerging as a frontrunner to be the first developed country to reach a free-trade agreement with China. …

One Response to “The Antipodean (Free Trade) Approach”

  1. Archive » Free Trade. But Not For All.| China Business Blog Says:

    […] owing exports, others closer to home are seeking to develop free trade agreements. I noted New Zealand’s efforts here, but since then there has been a lot of news on the issue. PanAsian […]

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