Kia ora koutou,
There has been steady progress across the New Zealand-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations in recent weeks, with an agreement made to lift the pace of free trade talks.
Round Four of negotiations, completed in April, resulted in three chapters (small and medium-sized enterprises, competition, and trade remedies) substantially concluded and several others flagged for completion during the next round of negotiations.
Trade and Export Growth Minister, Damien O’Connor says he is committed to accelerating the process and to push negotiations toward conclusion. He and his UK trade counterpart, Secretary Liz Truss, have agreed to speed up negotiations and aim to reach an agreement in the coming months (you can read the full press release here ).
Although it’s exciting to see negotiations happening at pace, New Zealand is seeking a high quality, comprehensive and inclusive agreement that provides benefits for all New Zealanders, including Māori and will not compromise the quality of the agreement for speed.
Round five negotiations are scheduled for 8-14 June. Prior to this, New Zealand will be putting forward its chapter on a sub-set of Māori interests and additional proposals that reflect Māori trade interests including Te Taumata’s research project.
We will continue to update you on any progress that is made by trade negotiators on this FTA in due course.
Chris Karamea Insley