Political & economic relations
An Overview of European Union / New Zealand Relations
Framework for the Relationship
On 21 September 2007, the EU and New Zealand signed a Joint Declaration on relations and cooperation between the European Union and New Zealand. The Joint Declaration will guide the EU-New Zealand bilateral relationship until 2012. It sets out a detailed action programme for the EU and New Zealand in such areas as global and regional security, counter-terrorism and human rights, visas, development and economic cooperation, trade, climate change as well as science and technology.
In 2009, the Joint Declaration was reviewed to include Progress made so far.
The EU-New Zealand relationship was given a formal framework in May 1999, when the first Joint Declaration on Relations between the European Union and New Zealand was signed. This document underlined the close ties between the EU and New Zealand, and expressed the determination to their further strengthening. A number of common goals were put forth in this Declaration, such as the support of democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights, to promote the effectiveness of the United Nations, to co-operate on development issues relating to countries in the South Pacific and to promote sustainable development and the protection of the global environment.
The EU and New Zealand have identified numerous areas of co-operation, which takes place through:
- Regular political dialogue, including consultations at Ministerial level between the European Union and New Zealand;
- Consultations as appropriate between officials of both sides to cover relevant aspects of the relationship.
Several sectoral agreements complete the picture. Most notable among them are the following:
- 1991 Arrangement between the Commission of the European Communities and the Government of New Zealand for co-operation in Science and Technology;
- 1997 Agreement between the European Community and New Zealand on sanitary measures applicable to trade in live animals and animal products;
- 1998 Agreement on mutual recognition in relation to conformity assessment between the European Community and New Zealand.
The EU and New Zealand share many common views in the field of foreign and security policy. In the Joint Declaration of 1999 they particularly underscore the political and economic importance of the Asia-Pacific region and commit themselves to consult closely with the aim of promoting peace, stability and prosperity in the area.
The EU is New Zealand's third largest export market, after Australia and Japan, and also its second largest supplier. Overall, the EU is New Zealand's second largest merchandise trading partner. While the United Kingdom remains New Zealand's first export destination in the EU, other countries, such as France, have also become more important. The EU represents 17% of the stock of foreign direct investment in New Zealand. Similarly, the EU is among the prime destinations for investments from New Zealand, accounting for 28% of the stock of New Zealand's direct investment abroad. The importance of Europe as a reliable and stable partner has seen a remarkable boost following the Asian financial crisis.
The Veterinary Agreement aims to facilitate trade in live animals and animal products while safeguarding public and animal health and meeting consumer expectations in relation to the wholesomeness of food products. The agreement also reduces regulatory duplication. It was provisionally applied since January 1997 and became official on 1 February 2003. New and existing requirements of each party to the agreement are subject to a consultation process. A Joint Management Committee has been established to cover all aspects of the Agreement.
The Mutual Recognition Agreement (1999) facilitates trade in industrial products between the EU and New Zealand. It covers exchanges estimated at more than €500 million in sectors such as medical devices, pharmaceutical goods, and telecommunications terminal equipment. A parallel agreement was also signed with Australia. These agreements are the first Mutual Recognition Agreements the EU has ever signed with a third country.
Consultations on agriculture and on fisheries at officials' level take place in Brussels every year. Consultations and information exchanges also take place in areas such as climate change, development assistance and humanitarian aid.
In the Joint Declaration, the EU and New Zealand underline the importance of closer co-operation to further facilitate people-to-people and scientific links and to encourage exchanges in education.
|GDP in New Zealand (2012)||136,137 million NZ$|
|EU merchandise exports to New Zealand (2012)||2.9 billion €|
|EU merchandise imports from New Zealand (2012)||4.1 billion €|
|EU service exports to New Zealand (2012)||1.5 billion €|
|EU service imports from New Zealand (2012)||1.1 billion €|
|EU direct investment inflows from New Zealand (2012)||1.4 billion €|
|EU direct investment outflows to New Zealand (2012)||5.3 billion €|