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Trade Minister Todd McClay says the Government has agreed a negotiating mandate to upgrade the China Free Trade Agreement that will deliver thousands of jobs and be worth billions to our economy.

“China is a significant trading partner. Our FTA with China has helped New Zealand companies stay in business during the GFC and keeps Kiwis in jobs,” Mr McClay says.

“We currently have $24 billion of two-way trade with this large economy and impressive growth in education, tourism and goods exports.”

“Trade means jobs - we know 8500 jobs are created in New Zealand from every billion dollars of exports.”

“Upgrading the China FTA will increase trade and deliver more jobs in every region and every city of the country."

Mr McClay says the upgrade priorities for the Bill English-led Government include a better deal for dairy, forestry and wood processing exporters, new rules to enhance online and digital trade and better measures to deal with non-tariff barriers.

"We want to free up access and continue to level the playing field for kiwi exporters," Mr McClay says.

“We have set a joint target of $30b of two-way trade with China by 2020.”

“The upgrade will make it easier for us to hit this significant target. We are committed to delivering for New Zealanders.”

The adoption of this mandate follows MFAT-led consultation and engagement with the public and business. MFAT continues to welcome feedback on the China FTA upgrade via its website.

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