6 March, 2013
Mexico, NZ commit to stronger trade relations
Prime Minister John Key says he and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto have committed to strengthening the trade relationship between New Zealand and Mexico, following bilateral talks in Mexico City.
“Mexico and New Zealand have shared a friendly relationship for 40 years. President Peña Nieto and I agreed the trade relationship between our two countries, while healthy, could be strengthened further,” says Mr Key.
Mr Key’s bilateral visit to Mexico is the first by a world leader since President Peña Nieto assumed office in December.
“Mexico is New Zealand’s largest goods trading partner in Latin America, and we would both like to see the two countries’ private sectors engage more in areas like agri-business, renewable energy and telecommunications.
“There is huge potential to advance our relationship by fostering trade and economic links, promoting investment and working together more closely in the Asia-Pacific region,” says Mr Key.
“I am pleased our two countries have today agreed to a Statement of Intent, which will provide the framework for the New Zealand Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment to work with the newly created Mexican National Entrepreneurs Institute.
“This will enable the two organisations to share information and carry out joint projects to grow trade and investment between Mexico and New Zealand.
Mr Key says the economies of New Zealand and Mexico share many similarities.
“Our similarities mean we compete in some areas – like the export of some fruit and vegetables – but, because of our different growing seasons, there is a lot of room for our industries to cooperate. For example, growers in New Zealand and Mexico could better coordinate their marketing to ensure a year-round quality supply of product to export markets.
“President Peña Nieto and I also discussed the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations which, along with other leaders, we are encouraging negotiators to complete by October.
“New Zealand exporters to Mexico currently face tariffs of up to 60 per cent on some goods. The successful completion of TPP negotiations will create further opportunities for New Zealand businesses wanting to export, expand and invest overseas.
“I have invited President Peña Nieto to visit New Zealand so we can continue our discussions around growing the flow of trade and investment between our two countries, and working together constructively in the Asia-Pacific region,” says Mr Key.
“I would also like to thank President Peña Nieto for Mexico’s support for New Zealand’s candidacy for a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council.
“New Zealand and Mexico enjoy a relationship of close cooperation on many international issues, and President Peña Nieto’s support for our bid underscores that,” says Mr Key.
Mr Key is leading a trade delegation to Mexico, Colombia, Chile and Brazil, and returns to New Zealand on March 15.