17 Feb 2011

NZ-China trade up by one third since FTA

12:25 pm on 17 February 2011

New Zealand's Free Trade Agreement with China has resulted in total trade between the countries jumping by more than a third in its first two years.

Trade Minister Tim Groser says the agreement helped to shelter New Zealand from the worst of the recession and China's booming economy plays a central role in the future.

Mr Groser says New Zealand's exports, which are worth $4.5 billion, have almost doubled and there has been growth in all major sectors.

A joint review of the agreement, which came into force in October 2008, shows most businesses view China with interest and see the deal in positive terms.

Prime Minister John Key and China's premier Wen Jiabao have set a goal of doubling trade by 2015.