The Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand (DCANZ) is welcoming the launch of free trade agreement negotiations between New Zealand and the UK as a positive development in the trade agenda.
“A high-quality and comprehensive FTA between the UK and New Zealand will further strengthen the historic and close relationship between our two countries” says DCANZ Chairman Malcolm Bailey
“At this time, when we are seeing a number of countries revert to trade protectionist policies and subsidies, it is heartening to see like-minded countries like New Zealand and the UK showing leadership on trade issues”.
Currently, the UK is only a small market for New Zealand dairy exports, accounting for 0.08% of New Zealand’s dairy exports in 2019. This is despite the fact that the UK is one of the world’s largest importers of dairy products.
“The UK’s previous membership of the European Union (EU), one of the most protected dairy markets globally, has severely limited the opportunity for its consumers to purchase high quality New Zealand dairy products. Now that the UK is able to negotiate its own trade arrangements, a UK-NZ FTA will provide important commercial opportunities for dairy sector participants in both countries”.
The New Zealand and the UK dairy sectors are complementary, with counter-seasonal production systems and a shared interest in managing price volatility globally. Both countries also place a high level of importance on food safety, animal welfare and environmental outcomes. The UK dairy industry is also efficient, with a long-history of competing against highly subsidised dairy exports from across the EU.
“An FTA between the UK and New Zealand will ensure that unsubsidised New Zealand dairy products have the same level of market access as has been enjoyed by European dairy products over the past four decades”.
A high-quality FTA between the UK and New Zealand will be an important pathway for the UK, should it wish to join the wider Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
“This is also an opportunity for NZ and the UK to demonstrate that not only can a high-quality FTA be negotiated in the current environment, but that it can be negotiated quickly and to the mutual benefit of both Parties” says Bailey.