UK FTA delivers benefits from today
New Zealand businesses will begin reaping the rewards of our gold-standard free trade agreement with the United Kingdom (UK FTA) from today.
“The New Zealand UK FTA enters into force from today, and is one of the seven new or upgraded Free Trade Agreements negotiated by Labour to date,” Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said.
“The economy is through the worst, with inflation having peaked and returning to the target range next year, good growth, and more workers coming in to help with skill shortages
“The benefits which begin flowing from the FTA today, provide a further big boost to our economy and will bring an up to $1 billion increase to our annual GDP.
“Our earlier than expected implementation means that from today New Zealand businesses will immediately save around $37 million dollars, with the instant elimination of tariffs and new duty-free quotas covering 99.5% of current exports,” Chris Hipkins said.
“Trade agreements can at times feel more academic than tangible, that is until the savings begin to flow through to every day New Zealanders, saving businesses millions and boosting jobs for kiwis,” Trade Minister Damien O’Connor said.
“Our wine industry is New Zealand’s biggest export to the UK – and will see at least $25 million in tariffs disappear overnight. Honey producers will no longer face a 16% duty and our dairy and red meat sectors will transition to duty and quota free access for the first time in 50 years.
“This is a major delivery milestone and sits alongside the seven new or upgraded FTAs secured since 2017, which is helping to contribute to record earnings for our exporters.
“The proportion of our export goods covered by an FTA have expanded from 52.5% to 73.5% since 2017 and shows the importance of these agreements to growing exports.
“We will continue to support New Zealand businesses by expanding into new markets and doing whatever we can to open doors and clear roadblocks making it difficult for exporters.
“In a cost of living crisis, the UK FTA cuts costs for exporters, boosts opportunities for small businesses, and will protect and create more jobs for New Zealanders. One in four jobs depend on trade – showing the importance of trade to our nation’s growing economy.
“As the first FTA launched and concluded under New Zealand’s Trade for All agenda, this agreement sets high ambition commitments in inclusive and sustainable trade with outcomes on environment, gender, and a dedicated chapter on Māori Trade and Economic Cooperation,” Damien O’Connor said.