• John Luxton

Goods will be traded more freely between New Zealand and Australia and the freedom of individuals to work in either country will be enhanced with the Trans Tasman Mutual Recognition Agreement (TTMRA) coming into effect tomorrow, ' Minister of Commerce, Hon John Luxton said today at a Beehive launch.

'The Arrangement is a further stage in developing CER. It is based on two key principles:

1) if goods may be legally sold in New Zealand they may be legally sold in an Australian jurisdiction, and vice versa, and

2) if a person is registered to practise an occupation in New Zealand he or she will be entitled to practise an equivalent occupation in an Australian jurisdiction.'

The TTMRA is an arrangement between the Commonwealth and all States and Territories of Australia and New Zealand which is aimed at removing regulatory barriers to the movement of goods and service providers between New Zealand and Australia. It comes into force tomorrow, the 1st of May 1998.

'Over time the potential benefits of the TTMRA for New Zealand families and businesses are significant.

"These include: lower costs to business and improved competitiveness as a result of businesses being able to manufacture to only one standard for the Trans Tasman market; greater choice for families and businesses in the market place; increased opportunities for New Zealanders to work in Australia and vice versa; and an impetus for both countries to consider the appropriateness of existing regulation in light of the Government's objectives of removing unnecessary barriers to trade,' Mr Luxton said.

He said that the TTMRA is a simple, and low cost and low maintenance mechanism for overcoming unnecessary regulatory impediments to trade between Australia and New Zealand.

"The Arrangement is an important milestone in the celebration of CER's 15th anniversary year helping Australia and New Zealand to achieve a level of integration attained by few other countries." The Arrangement, which was passed into law in New Zealand last year, represents, ' a significant step in the development of an integrated Trans-Tasman economy, and illustrates the degree of maturity and trust which has developed in the relationship between New Zealand and Australia,'he said.

Mr Luxton added that the TTMRA is also consistent with, and complements, the objectives of the World Trade Organisations (WTO) and initiatives currently undertaken within APEC aimed at liberalising trade.