NZ, Australia to get first post-Brexit trade deals - McClay

  • 11/03/2017
Trade Minister Todd McClay (Brigitte Purcell / Newshub.)
Trade Minister Todd McClay (Brigitte Purcell / Newshub.)

New Zealand and Australia are first in line when the UK is ready to do free trade agreements post Brexit, according to Trade Minister Todd McClay.

Mr McClay has been at the first Commonwealth Trade Ministers meeting in London, where he had a bilateral meeting with British Secretary of State for International Trade Dr Liam Fox and Minister for Trade Policy Lord Price.

Mr McClay has released a video in the wake of the meeting and tweeted "pleased to confirm with @LiamFoxMP NZ along with Australia will be first counties to get FTA with UK following Brexit".

He says in the video that Dr Fox has confirmed for the first time that New Zealand will be first cab off the rank along with Australia for free trade agreements the UK does when it leaves the EU.

New Zealand will have the opportunity to negotiate a high-quality and comprehensive agreement that will secure ongoing access for Kiwi exporters to the important UK market, Mr McClay says.

"There's still a lot more to do but our relationship with the UK is going from strength to strength," he says.

A joint statement after the meeting said the politicians reaffirmed their commitment to global trade liberalisation, and to lay the foundations for the future trade relationship between the UK and New Zealand.

Dr Fox confirmed his intention to visit New Zealand in the coming months.

"During that visit we will hold a joint public event to highlight the importance and benefits of open markets to our citizens at a time when the global economy is facing a period of uncertainty," Mr McClay says.

Dr Fox asserted the importance the UK places on its trading relationship with New Zealand, with total trade in goods and services between the two countries increasing by 13 percent between 2014/15.