The US New Zealand Trade Agreement – An Overview
The US New Zealand Trade Agreement, also known as the NZUSFTA, is a bilateral free trade agreement signed between the United States and New Zealand in 2008. The agreement aims to enhance trade between the two countries by eliminating tariffs and non-tariff barriers.
The agreement covers a wide range of goods and services, including manufactured goods, agricultural products, and intellectual property rights. It also includes provisions for investment protection, labor standards, and environmental protection.
Benefits of the Agreement
The NZUSFTA has several benefits for both countries. For New Zealand, the agreement provides greater access to the US market, which is one of the largest in the world. It also enables New Zealand businesses to compete on a level playing field with their US counterparts, as tariffs on New Zealand goods are gradually reduced or eliminated.
For the US, the agreement provides greater market access to New Zealand, particularly in the agricultural sector. It also helps to promote US exports and create new opportunities for American businesses, which can benefit from the reduction or elimination of tariffs on their products.
Impact on Agriculture
One of the key areas of focus in the NZUSFTA is agriculture. The agreement has helped to open up the US market to New Zealand agricultural products, such as dairy, beef, and lamb. In return, New Zealand has granted increased access to the US market for certain agricultural and food products.
The agreement has been particularly beneficial for the dairy industry, which is a major contributor to the New Zealand economy. The removal of tariffs on dairy products has allowed New Zealand to increase its exports to the US, which account for around 5% of total US dairy imports.
Challenges and Criticisms
Despite the many benefits of the NZUSFTA, the agreement has also faced some challenges and criticisms. Some critics have raised concerns about the impact of the agreement on local industries, such as manufacturing and agriculture, in both countries.
There have also been concerns raised about the potential impact of the agreement on the environment and labor standards in both countries. These issues have been addressed in the agreement through the inclusion of provisions covering environmental protection and labor standards.
Overall, the US New Zealand Trade Agreement has had a positive impact on trade between the two countries. The agreement has helped to increase market access for both countries and has created new opportunities for businesses to grow and prosper. While there have been some challenges and criticisms, the benefits of the agreement continue to outweigh any potential drawbacks.