18 May 2012

Taiwan trade negotiations tipped

12:51 pm on 18 May 2012

The Government is due to announce the start of formal negotiations with Taiwan for a free trade deal.

The decision to push ahead with the talks comes after the completion of a feasibility study between the two sides.

Radio New Zealand understands the joint feasibility, announced last October, has concluded it is worth pursuing negotiations for a free trade deal.

Taiwan is New Zealand's eighth largest export market, worth $1 billion last year.

Exporters at present face a 15% tariff on meat sales although barriers to dairy are relatively low.

A study last year by Victoria University's Neil Quigley showed New Zealand's exports to Taiwan could be expected to rise by $100 million without those tariffs.

Announcing the joint study last year, Trade Minister Tim Groser said New Zealand would pursue full elimination of tariffs in any trade deal.