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New Zealand, United Kingdom push for greater global trade liberalization

New Zealand, Britain commit to defending trade liberalization

WELLINGTON – New Zealand and the United Kingdom will together push for greater global trade liberalization, New Zealand Trade Minister Todd McClay said Friday.

McClay said the two governments had also agreed to lay the foundations for their future trade relationship once Britain exits the European Union.

McClay met with British International Trade Secretary Liam Fox and Minister for Trade Policy Lord Price in London, following up on the inaugural bilateral Trade Policy Dialogue meeting earlier this month.

“Our dialog will enable us to build on our existing trading framework, towards an agreement in the future,” McClay said in a statement from his office.

“Through the dialog we will continue to push for greater global trade liberalization and reform, share expertise, and identify ways to strengthen our trading relationship.”

Fox had asserted the importance Britain placed on its trading relationship with New Zealand, with total trade in goods and services between the two countries increasing by 13 percent in 2015.

McClay also welcomed the British commitment to be “a champion of global free trade.”

Fox had 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,” McClay said.

Fox had also confirmed that Britain would remain fully supportive of the New Zealand-EU free trade agreement, which is expected to enter the negotiation phase this year after scoping talks were finished earlier this month. (PNA/Xinhua)

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