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NZ highlights FTA gains with Korea

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 8/01/2017

Trade Minister Todd McClay is highlighting gains made in a free-trade agreement with Korea as he looks to make progress in getting one with the European Union.

He says the start of 2017 saw two thirds of New Zealand's exports to Korea become duty free, up from 46 per cent in 2016.

Since the agreement came into force in December 2015, New Zealand food and beverage exports to Korea have increased by more than 16 per cent.

When the agreement is 15 years old 97.8 per cent of New Zealand's total current exports to Korea will enter duty and quota free.

"The FTA also gives New Zealand consumers better access to high quality Korean goods like electronics, cars and machinery," Mr McClay says.

He will be in Brussels next week with Prime Minister Bill English where they'll be discussing further trade opportunities with the EU.

New Zealand and the EU have previously announced their agreement to start the process for FTA negotiations.

Mr McClay will meet with EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom and Christian Cardona, Malta's minister for the economy, investment and small business. Malta currently holds the presidency of the Council of the European Union.

The EU is New Zealand's third-largest trading partner, with two-way trade valued at $19.6 billion in goods and services in the year to June 2015.

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