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AmCham & NZ US Council statement on IPEF

19 Jul 2023 2:11 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

Indo-Pacific Economic Framework  - NZ US Council and AMCHAM NZ Perspectives

The NZ US Council and the American Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand partner with each other in pursuit of strong and enduring ties between New Zealand and the United States.

The NZ US Council was founded in 2001 as a non-partisan, non-Government organisation, focused on advancing New Zealand’s relationship with the United States. The Council has secured a position as a preeminent policy conduit for business, academia and others invested in NZ US connections, to engage in formal and informal policy processes.

AMCHAM New Zealand is an active and much respected champion of companies and entrepreneurs growing the commercial linkages with the United States and building effective networks of businesspeople.

Both organisations have been following with close interest the structure and substance of the evolving Indo-Pacific Economic Framework. The economic weight and trade potential of the participants is self-evident. Given current multilateral and geopolitical challenges impacting on our region, we welcome this initiative to reinforce a rules based policy framework.

While the level of commitment to more traditional trade access elements of plurilateral agreements is less ambitious and less comprehensive than either of our organisations would ideally like to see, we accept that the process can establish a framework of policy architecture amongst its fourteen participating members. We would like to see this developed and expanded in due course. It remains our enduring goal to have the US reengage with CPTPP in the future. We also support and remain invested in the pillars which address important emerging trade considerations and valid sustainability and labour considerations. The excellent work that has been done on the supply chain pillar is especially valuable for New Zealand.

US leadership in guiding the outcome associated with this pillar was greatly appreciated in New Zealand, as an active and outwards looking trading country with diverse economic interests, engaged in many different sectors and constructive partnerships with US entities.

We are an efficient and well-respected food producer, but we are also at the forefront (in terms of innovation if not scale) of sectors such as gaming, film, aerospace, medical research, software development and sustainability technologies. We accord immense value to our partnerships with the United States in these areas.

It is also crucial that investors in the region can have confidence that there is a manageable level of risk when exploring opportunities in new territory. We see good structure around labour, the environment, efforts to stamp out corruption and support for good governance as critically important confidence building measures.

Although we would have liked to see more emphasis on reducing tariffs and addressing non-tariff barriers our support of IPEF remains strong and unequivocal. We look forward to making a constructive contribution to the process in any way we can.

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