New Zealand launches free trade talks with the UK

New Zealand has formally launched free trade negotiations with the United Kingdom, with hopes a swift deal could assist with the country's post-Covid recovery.

The two countries announced the start of FTA talks on Wednesday afternoon, offering a new avenue for trade progress.

In a statement announcing the start of trade talks with the UK, Trade Minister Parker said it made more sense than ever for the two countries to work more closely together in a post-Brexit environment.

The Coalition Government hoped a deal would include wins for small- and medium-sized businesses, Māori exporters, and regional communities, with the removal of trade tariffs and new approaches to non-tariff barriers at the top of the list.

The UK is New Zealand's sixth-largest trading partner, with two-way trade worth about $6 billion in 2019.

The first round of negotiations is set to take place by video conference in mid-July.


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