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Trade for all: NZ’s approach to trade policy and what it means for NZ & Latin American relations.

Wed, 14 Aug, 2019 12:45 PM — 2:45 PM
PWC, Level 22, 188 Quay Street, Auckland

The Latin America New Zealand Business Council was pleased to host our flagship event for 2019, a lunch with Minister of Trade and Economic Growth, Hon David Parker, and a wide range of members and friends at PWC in Auckland with its outlook over the sparkling Waitemata Harbour.

The Minister opened by commenting on the strength of relationship between New Zealand and Latin America, based on wide ranging people-to-people links, trade and business interests, shared cultural similarities, institutions and indigenous links, tourism, education and sport. These shared interests created a natural affinity and familiarity between us.

He also presented six pillars of New Zealand’s trade policy: defending the rules-based order; embedding New Zealand in regional economic architecture; supporting regional and global institutions; advancing open plurilateralism; trade for all; and intensified economic diplomacy.

Despite a challenging global economic outlook, it was positive to hear that the New Zealand Government, together with partners such as LANZBC, is undertaking a number of initiatives to support regional economic integration, improve competitiveness and productivity, and open up new opportunities for New Zealand businesses in Latin America.

These include considering New Zealand as the ‘Southern Link’ - a hub for air freight and travel between Asia and Latin America – which was the subject of a day-long conference supported by LANZBC earlier this year; the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership – which will enable New Zealand’s first FTAs with Mexico and Peru – and the ongoing NZ-Pacific Alliance negotiations involving Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile, as well as discussions with MERCOSUR.

These initiatives will support New Zealand business to take up new opportunities in Latin America. The Minister pointed out that while the combined GDP of the ASEAN region is USD3tn, this is surpassed by the combined GDP of Mexico and Brazil alone! The scale of opportunity in Latin America is significant, and the LANZBC continues to work hard on behalf of our members to help realise these.

A special thank you to those who attended, and to our sponsors the Latin America CAPE, University of Auckland, LIC, LATAM Airlines, Language Links, Lewis Lawyers and Concha Y Toro, who helped make the event a success.

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