New Zealand Eyes Free Trade Deal With Russia by Yearend
By Vittorio Hernandez | February 4, 2014 9:26 AM EST
An employee of a local agrarian farm "Moskovsky" ventilates grain to prevent it from rotting some 40 km (25 miles) north of Stavropol in southern Russia, October 11, 2013. Picture taken October 11, 2013. REUTERS/Eduard Korniyenko
Kremlin officials said on Monday that Russia is working to have a free trade deal with New Zealand by the yearend. The agreement would include Belarus and Kazakhstan, the New Zealand Herald reported.
If the agreement would push through, New Zealand would enjoy access to the Russian market for its agricultural products, including butter and milk manufactured by the country's biggest company, Fonterra, but are currently slapped with high tariffs such as 9 per cent for fresh produce and dairy products and 5.45 per cent for electrical machinery.
It would be the first deal of its kind between Russia and a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
But the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of New Zealand pointed out that outstanding issues between the two governments remain, mainly access for agricultural products to customs union.
In the 12-year period 2000 to 2012, New Zealand's export to Russia jumped 351 per cent to $230.4 million from $51 million. The $230.4 million is broken down into $106 million dairy products, $55 million meat and $20 million fish.
However, the country's exports to Belarus and Kazakhstan are significantly lesser at $635,588 and $1.6 million in 2012, respectively.
A ministry spokesman said, quoted by New Zealand Herald, "While we would welcome the FTA's conclusion this year, our main priority is to secure a high-quality outcome, rather than needing to conclude the deal by any specific deadline."
Besides discussions with Russia, New Zealand is also in talks with India and South Korea for an FTA and also with the Trans Pacific Partnership which is a trade and economic negotiation made up of 12 nations, including the U.S., Japan, Canada and Mexico.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Taylor Swift Named Forbes' Second Highest Paid Country Musician [PHOTOS]
- Forever Lost: Indescribable Anguish for Malaysia Airlines MH17 Families, Remains of Some Victims May Never Be Found (PHOTOS)
- Global Aviation Accidents: UN to Form Safety Task Force, Gov'ts Should Share Intelligence Info to Avert Future Incidents on Flying Over Warzones (PHOTOS)
- Lunch with the Gods: Pope Francis Eats with Vatican Workers in Cafeteria
Join the Conversation
- El Pollo Loco Shareprice Up 33% on 1st Day of Trading
- South Australia OKs $800M Copper, Gold & Iron Ore Mine on Prime Agri Land in Yorke Peninsula
- Australian Stock Market Report –Midday July 30, 2014
- Long Beach Real Estate Market Is Pricing Out Home Buyers with Limited Budget
- Shanghai Stock Exchange Will Not Extend Trading Hours
- Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17: Parents of Australian Passenger Want ‘Space Scientists’ to Investigate Crash; Believe in ‘Possibility’ of Survival -- Report
- Childhood Obesity is Strongly Linked With Early Puberty: Study Reveals
- Why Internet of Things is the Next Big Thing for Tech Giants like Samsung, Google and Apple
- Instagram's Newest App Bolt Now Available Exclusively in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa
- Megan Fox's Weight Loss Aided by Low Carb Paleo Diet: Benefits of the Diet