Aiming to reduce tariffs and improving on trade among countries, this week New Zealand and Britain signed a free trade agreement. After 16 months of negotiation, Prime Ministers Boris Johnson and Jacinda Ardern sealed the deal over a conference call on Wednesday.
“This deal serves New Zealand’s economy and exporters well as we reconnect, rebuild and recover from COVID-19, and look forward into the future,” Ardern said at a news conference in Wellington, adding the deal was the country’s best ever.
The signing date of the agreement has not yet been announced, but as soon as it goes into effect, tariffs for 97% of the products should be eliminated for both countries. For New Zealand, the deal is expected to provide an increase of almost NZ $1 billion in GDP.
The agreement includes better access to New Zealand beef and greater security for sheep meat exports, with a gradual increase in export tonnages and the elimination of all tariffs after a 10-year-signature for beef and a 15-year for sheep period.
“New Zealand is one of the most sustainable producers in the world and we are well-placed to meet British consumers’ high expectations. New Zealand’s free range, pasture-raised farming systems means that our product is seasonal and the perfect complement to the United Kingdom’s northern hemisphere production” said Sam McIvor, CEO at Beef + Lamb New Zealand.