5 Oct 2010

Divisions emerge over Pacific trade deal terms

6:08 am on 5 October 2010

Formal negotiations involving New Zealand for a Pacific free trade area resume this week, with the United States and the seven countries of the TransPacific Partnership at loggerheads over how far-reaching the deal should be.

The United States wants to keep existing free trade deals in the TransPacific Partnership (TPP) in place, and negotiate afresh with members with which it has no deals.

New Zealand negotiators, however, want a single overarching agreement, arguing it could make it harder to get better access to US markets for New Zealand exports than other countries achieved in their deals.

Trade Minister Tim Groser says he can't see a way of breaking the deadlock at the Brunei talks but says the US is determined to get a deal, and may yet back down.