New Zealand Is A Vital Trading Partner For Fiji

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Significant two-way relationship for goods and services

By Ropate Valemei

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, June 30, 2014) – New Zealand continues to be an important trading partner for Fiji, exporting goods and services worth about $400million.

This was compared with about $109m worth of exports to New Zealand from Fiji. New Zealand acting head of mission to Fiji Mark Ramsden said this was very significant as Fiji was their 28th largest trading partner.

"To put that into perspective, the 27th largest trading partner is Mexico and Fiji is a really important market for us," Mr Ramsden said.

He said this was a significant two-way trade between the two countries and it was not just growing NZ exports to Fiji.

"The NZ Government wants to see the growth of Fiji export to the country.

"We want to see the whole trading relationship grow and it's really important to us."

NZ is the second largest source country for tourists to Fiji after Australia.

"When you take into account services we have a really massive economic relations between the two countries."

Fiji's major export to NZ include agricultural products such as dalo and garments.

He said there was a huge potential to grow produces and service exports.

Ministry of Industry and Trade permanent secretary Shaheen Ali in his keynote address said Fiji was creating a strong position in the Pacific which was emerging as a robust export destination for the country.

"Now, the Pacific island countries combined account for 25 per cent of Fiji's exports, compared with New Zealand, which is only 5 per cent.

"Fiji is New Zealand's largest export destination in the Pacific region, but imports from non-traditional partners such as Malaysia, Indonesia and China are increasing at a steady rate," he said.

He said NZ remained an important partner, accounting for 10.25 per cent of Fiji's total trade.

However, he said in the past five years the two countries bilateral trade had marginally increased at less than 10 per cent per annum.

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