New Zealand Horticulture Export Authority CEO, Simon Hegarty says:
The announcement of a free trade agreement between New Zealand (NZ) and the European Union (EU) is warmly welcomed across the NZ horticulture exporting landscape.
This news provides a big lift for future prospects against the current backdrop of significant challenges in exporting perishable products and the geopolitical uncertainties. The removal of trade distorting tariffs will be good for the NZ horticulture export sectors by levelling the pitch with other southern hemisphere supplying countries. The EU consumers will benefit from the agreement enabling better security of access for healthy NZ food products.
With annual export value to the EU ranging from NZ$830 - 940 million (Fob) over the past three years and tariffs ranging from zero to 20% (depending on the item), the removal of tariffs on trade with the EU will provide an estimated benefit of approximately NZ$80m annually. This equates to the removal of approximately 60% of our entire annual horticulture tariff costs globally.
The 27-member EU with its 445million population has been the leading destination for New Zealand’s horticulture trade profile for decades. Now dominated by the kiwifruit, apples and onions trade, there are also a range of lesser-known NZ products (e.g. buttercup squash, apricots, frozen berries) that will stand to benefit from the removal of tariffs.
We extend our appreciation to the NZ negotiating team whose combined efforts and leadership resulted in this welcome agreement, from what has been a complex negotiation under testing conditions.