Prime Minister launches New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership

  • Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern
Prime Minister

An even closer relationship between Singapore and New Zealand has been launched by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today that will see trade, defence, cybersecurity, education and arts and culture ties strengthened and an improved working holiday scheme for young New Zealanders launched.

 The New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership, signed today in Singapore by Prime Minister Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee, will bring benefits for the citizens of both countries and a substantive lift to the relationship.

 Key features of the Enhanced Partnership includes:

  • An upgrade of our Free Trade Agreement which smooths the way for New Zealand companies to capitalise on opportunities in Singapore
  • A new Science, Technology and Innovation Arrangement funding for joint research totalling NZ$57 million
  • Enhanced defence cooperation and a new Cyber Security Arrangement
  • An improved Working Holiday Scheme
  • A suite of Arts and Culture agreements

 “Making it easier for New Zealand businesses to export is a key plank of the Government’s economic plan. The Enhanced Partnership with Singapore delivers on that objective,” Jacinda Ardern said.

“The Enhanced Partnership makes it easier to do business with Singapore directly, and the country also acts as gateway for our goods and services to access the growing Asian market.

 “Singapore is our closest and most significant partner in South East Asia, and seventh largest trading partner globally. This agreement extends the breadth of our existing relationship and strengthens the ties between our people.

 “The Enhanced Partnership will lead to new research collaboration, greater defence cooperation, including working together on the increasingly important area of cybersecurity.

“Our common interests as small advanced economies means that Singapore is a valuable and natural partner for New Zealand. Singapore also shares our ambition to protect and advance an open and inclusive international rules-based order.

 “Today’s announcement marks a significant step up in our relationship and will result in a deeper and more modern partnership, boosting New Zealand’s prosperity to the benefit of all New Zealanders.

 “New agreements covering arts and culture, education, public service exchanges and an improved working holiday scheme will mean that ties between our people will be strengthened too.

 “The Enhanced Partnership provides a foundation from which we can deepen our cooperation even further in the future,” Jacinda Arden said.

 Note to editors: 

  • Singapore is a significant economic partner for New Zealand in South East Asia and 7th largest trading partner globally
  • Trade growth of 9% (2017-2018)
  • Total trade of NZ$5.2 billion worth of goods and services in 2018. 
  • 5th largest foreign investor, NZ$4.32b
  • 8th largest source of tourists, with 61,000 visitors a year

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