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The Government needs to take all practical steps to ensure that New Zealand’s trade with China remains within the spirit of our Free Trade Agreement, National’s Trade spokesperson Todd McClay says.

“This follows comments by the Foreign Minister Winston Peters on China’s criticism of New Zealand supporting Taiwan joining the World Health Organisation, and China confirming they have suspended beef imports from four Australian abattoirs following similar comments there.

“As the primary sector looks to do their part to help rebuild the economy and protect jobs through trade, it is imperative that trade routes are kept open and trade relationships that underpin New Zealand jobs are protected. 

“China is New Zealand's largest trading partner, with two-way trade valued at over $32 billion in 2019. 

“Dairy and forestry exports to China have been among the first signs of movement in the economy since the world came to a halt due to Covid-19. 

“It’s important that our relationship with China remains respectful. 

“I urge the Government to take practical steps to ensure trade with China continues freely.”

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