25 Mar 2013

PM to visit China early next month

9:29 pm on 25 March 2013

Prime Minister John Key will lead a delegation of senior ministers and a large group of business representatives to China next month.

The trip marks the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between New Zealand and China, and the fifth anniversary of their Free Trade Agreement.

Mr Key says China has the potential to become New Zealand's largest market and the trip will focus on building deeper trade ties.

"We've made enormous progress in five years of an FTA and 40 years of diplomatic relations but if you look at the sheer scale in development of China we, I don't think, have got anywhere near reaching the ceiling of our economic opportunities with them."

Mr Key says he will also be reaffirming New Zealand's commitment to food safety standards.