EU and New Zealand Forge Free Trade Deal, Projected to Increase Bilateral Trade by 30%
EU and New Zealand sign free trade agreement to boost bilateral trade. Tariffs eliminated, projected 30% increase. Ratification pending.
The European Union (EU) and New Zealand have officially signed a free trade agreement that is anticipated to bolster bilateral trade by up to 30% in the coming decade.
The agreement holds immense potential for New Zealand, as it is projected to witness a substantial surge in exports to the 27-country bloc, with an estimated value of up to 1.8 billion New Zealand dollars ($1.1 billion; €1 billion) per annum, as confirmed by a government statement.
After extensive negotiations spanning five years, this comprehensive trade deal aims to eliminate tariffs amounting to NZ$248 million ($153 million; €140 million) annually, as stated by the European Commission.
Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, expressed her enthusiasm about the agreement, highlighting New Zealand's pivotal role as a key partner in the Indo-Pacific region. She emphasized the significance of this milestone, stating, "With today's signature, we have taken an important step in making the agreement a reality."
Under the provisions of the agreement, duties on 91% of New Zealand's exported goods to the EU will be abolished right from the inception of the deal. This figure is expected to rise to 97% after a period of seven years, facilitating smoother trade flows and expanded market access for New Zealand businesses.
It is important to note that the agreement must first be ratified by the respective parliaments of both the EU member states and New Zealand before it can be implemented. As a result, a specific commencement date for the agreement has not yet been determined.
The EU-New Zealand free trade deal marks a significant milestone in fostering economic cooperation and trade advancement between the two regions. By forging stronger ties and creating new avenues for businesses and consumers, this agreement is poised to drive economic growth and prosperity in both markets, setting the stage for a mutually beneficial partnership.