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New Zealand Finalizes Historic Trade Deal with Costa Rica, Iceland, and Switzerland to Eliminate Tariffs on Sustainable Goods

New Zealand Finalizes Historic Trade Deal with Costa Rica, Iceland, and Switzerland to Eliminate Tariffs on Sustainable Goods

New Zealand
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  • New Markets: Tariff eliminations boost NZ wood, wool, and eco-friendly exports.
  • Climate Action: Agreement addresses fossil fuel subsidies and supports renewable energy.
  • Sustainability Focus: Promotes trade in sustainable goods and services.

New Zealand Secures Landmark Trade Deal

New Zealand has finalized a pioneering trade deal with Costa Rica, Iceland, and Switzerland, aiming to remove tariffs on hundreds of sustainable and eco-friendly products, says Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay.

Boost for NZ Exports

“The Agreement on Climate Change, Trade and Sustainability (ACCTS) opens commercial opportunities for New Zealand businesses by focusing on trade in sustainable goods and services. Crucially, it removes tariffs on 41 wood products and wool,” McClay announced. “This deal includes wool fiber, slag wool for insulation, recycled paper, LED lamps, and rechargeable batteries.”

Support for Renewable Energy

McClay emphasized the agreement’s role in promoting renewable energy by establishing rules against harmful fossil fuel subsidies and setting guidelines for eco-labeling. “ACCTS will open new markets for New Zealand exporters and grow in benefit over time as more countries join.”

Economic and Environmental Benefits

“This trade agreement is the first New Zealand has concluded with these countries outside the WTO, delivering high-quality trade opportunities while tackling climate and sustainability challenges. It is only through a strong economy that we can lift incomes, reduce the cost of living, and provide Kiwis the public services they deserve. The ACCTS deal helps achieve this,” McClay added.

Details of the ACCTS

The ACCTS is a landmark trade agreement addressing climate change and sustainability while delivering commercial benefits to New Zealand’s economy. It eliminates tariffs on over 300 environmental goods like solar panels, wind turbines, electric vehicles, and wood products, making them cheaper and incentivizing their use. The agreement also facilitates trade in environmental services through market access and supplier certainty.

Global Impact and Future Growth

ACCTS aims to set an example for multilateral action on climate change. New Zealand’s leadership on fossil fuel subsidy reform aligns with this agreement, promoting international efforts to eliminate these subsidies, which amount to USD 1.4 trillion annually. In contrast, global renewable energy investment was USD 495 billion in 2022. “Trade rules can substantively help address climate change and other serious environmental challenges,” McClay noted.

New Zealand’s Commitment

New Zealand is committed to using trade policies to address sustainability issues and lead international efforts in this area. The ACCTS will enhance New Zealand’s trade policy influence and support broader connections within the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Related Article: Air New Zealand Inks its Largest Sustainable Aviation Fuel Deal with Finland’s Neste to Meet Net-Zero Targets

Public Involvement

New Zealanders are encouraged to share their views on trade agreements. “Your feedback informs our approach to negotiations,” McClay stated. Public meetings and events are organized to discuss trade agreements, advertised through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s website and social media.

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