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New Zealand trade negotiations with Europe

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, May 23rd, 2018 - 7 comments
Categories: China, david parker, Economy, International, labour, us politics - Tags:

New Zealand and Australia are entering in to trade negotiations with Europe.

For those with really long memories about how the U.K. treated New Zealand when the European Common Market was formed, you might not have much sympathy for the U.K.’s trade position as Europe prepares its severance.

All power to Prime Minister Ardern and Trade Minister Parker in their negotiations. Maybe our economy will do better out of it that the CPTPP projections.

But this is not just a rejection of the U.K. from Europe. It is also a rejection of the self-interested bullying and international damage that the U.S. is doing right across the world. Surely there are more ambitious values with which to engage with the world than just trade?

On Thursday 31 May at the University of Auckland, the Fabians are hosting Max Harris on the topic “Is it time for an independent foreign policy?” We need fresh thinking on diplomacy.

There’s no doubt the destabilising rise of Donald Trump’s United States government and the sheer regional power of Xi Jinping’s Chinese government has underscored the need to think afresh about our placing in the world.

It’s also very clear that our primary ally Australia now thinks and acts in its own interests compared to New Zealand citizens (although there are still specific entitlements) and its focus on the Pacific is strenghtening.

New Zealand’s 2018 budget finally starts to give us some sorely-needed capacity to do good diplomatic work in the Pacific.

So let’s think.

It’s evident that CPTPP and the Paris Climate Accords are vital – for all their faults – to retaining a strong multilateral diplomatic system. New Zealand remains totally reliant on forming and obeying world-spanning systems of laws. For that reason we have been from the beginning a fulsome supporter of the United Nations.

But New Zealand is not here to stand still. The webs of internationalist law are under high strain and in many areas fraying. True, the international order’s demise has been greatly exaggerated, and it’s proven to withstand shifts in global politics and economics so it’s strong enough to withstand a term of President Donald Trump.

But could we at least ask whether Five Eyes could be more inclusive?

Do we have to look at international relations – as we have – almost solely through the lens of trade and economic interests?

Can we fix our damaged domestic social frameworks while also seeking a fresh way of engaging with the world at the same time?

Does our future economy has more in common with Denmark and South Korea than it does Australia, or will our huge share of trade and social interdependence with Australia dictate our diplomatic focus there?
Is it worthwhile continuing to support the rules-based order of the United Nations when our troops are sent under resolution to countries such as Sudan, Afghanistan and Iraq where we will never have any national interest, ever? Or is that the kind of thinking that accelerates the decline of the U.N. completely?

Do we have any greater obligation to small and barely viable South Pacific states, or is the improved level of aid & development support about right?

What would be the costs of a really independent foreign policy, over the benefits of salving our conscience with greater national independence?

Maybe Max Harris has some answers. Maybe this is a government fresh enough to really make us think about our place and our agency in the world. Let’s expect more.

7 comments on “New Zealand trade negotiations with Europe ”

  1. The Chairman 1

    An expected GDP boost of 0.52 percent over the long term for New Zealand.

    An expected 0.64 percent increase in New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions.

    With the number of NZ firms exporting in decline, far more work is required to be done turning that around if we are to achieve better gains. Greener thus cleaner firms would be preferable if we want to lessen the related emissions.

  2. Draco T Bastard 3

    A healthy economy should be designed to thrive, not grow

    Economics: We’re doing it wrong.

  3. SPC 4

    We should consider asking the EU to consider us and Oz as one entity, CER. If not for these talks, for the purposes of a next stage as EU, CER and ASEAN (and UK).

    Ultimately our goal needs to be create a new global FTA that can move beyond the WTO impasse (due to American agendas and global third world resistance).

    That would include parties in TPP (and expansion of this to all ASEAN nations), especially South Korea and Japan.

    This while developing the FTA with China and supporting their moves for China/ASEAN/CER/Japan/South Korea/Taiwan/India/Russia – RCEP.

    It’s twin track, but there are geo-political divides between the EU Russia and China that require this (at least till the EU moves on from the US as NATO partner guarantor to their security).

    By this time it should be obvious the USA is isolated, a fading economic power that will soon lose its imperial coin status and so we then withdraw from 5 Eyes.

  4. CHCOff 5

    Trade with Britain should be number 1 and is a big opportunity unique to New Zealand’s place. Historical, deep seated and long standing understanding of values within the commonwealth framework of shared freedoms and prosperity, which is a traditional strength of New Zealand identity.

    There are other futures but they are not so New Zealand.

    Would like to see business associations in the form of product chains formed, with say a 60/40 ratio of self regulating standard setting and decision making (60% say to all the different firms equally within that product chain specification, 40% allocated on the basis of volumes shifted). If have the opportunity, people gravitate to quality. The conscious consumer, and the conscious producer being one and the same is what’s all about.

    Oh and a third of parliamentary seats automatically being allocated to such associations, on the basis of local New Zealand custom of their goods and services, from a complimentary currency that is equally distributed to all citizens, & redeemable by such participating associations with the govt.

  5. Exkiwiforces 6

    But could we at least ask whether Five Eyes could be more inclusive?
    I think there is more chance of the RNZAF reforming its Air Strike Wing than that But could we at least ask whether Five Eyes could be more inclusive?

    Do we have to look at international relations – as we have – almost solely through the lens of trade and economic interests?

    To have an independent foreign policy we most encompass not only Trade and Economic interests, but also Foreign Aid, Defence and Climate Change as they all inter- act with each other as mere words do SWFA, but one Actions speak the loudest. As I learnt that the hard way on my Peacekeeping Op as “Actions speak loudly than words” and it saves lives.

    Can we fix our damaged domestic social frameworks while also seeking a fresh way of engaging with the world at the same time?

    Yes and it can be done if we use a holistic way as we need to look at the big picture and think long term which seems to be a bit hard for today’s Pollies as words and 30sec sound bites are cheap instead of actions. The Public needs to understand why we need a strong well equipped Airforce and Navy backed by a light aglie Army to respond quickly at short notice Chap 1 to 7 and HADR. Understand that our Sea Lanes of Communications and the various choke points that form or SLOC’s are our weak link to the outside world in terms of our economic wealth.

    Does our future economy has more in common with Denmark and South Korea than it does Australia, or will our huge share of trade and social interdependence with Australia dictate our diplomatic focus there?

    As a small country that relies on its exports for economic wealth and we solely dependent on our trading partners. But on the same token we shouldn’t put all our eggs in the same basket aka China atm which atm it’s total debt is about 250% and rising of its total GDP which mean that bubble will go pop at some stage you would think?

    Is it worthwhile continuing to support the rules-based order of the United Nations when our troops are sent under resolution to countries such as Sudan, Afghanistan and Iraq where we will never have any national interest, ever?

    Yes and without a rules based order we are ****ed as a nation. One only needs to look at the South China Sea atm when a strong nation thumb it’s nose at International Count and those countries that have weak military when words fail or down off the Southern Tip of South America where a Chinese Fishing Fleet were caught fishing illegally and when words failed to stop them they were shot at with a few boats being sunk.
    The UN Security Council must reform itself if we are maintain the rules based order and if doesn’t then I think the UN will go the way of League of Nations. Then Commonwealth will end up as our fullback position as our hope.

    Do we have any greater obligation to small and barely viable South Pacific states, or is the improved level of aid & development support about right?

    Yes, the South Pacific Nations are part of us as we are a part of them and need strong viable island nations if we are to maintain an independent foreign policy if we are going to be able trade to our Northern Pacific Trading Nations in times of high tension or during war. Plus they are a part of the Commonwealth and need to help each other in more ways than one.

    What would be the costs of a really independent foreign policy, over the benefits of salving our conscience with greater national independence?

    Have independent foreign policy is going to cost more when you factor in Foreign Aid, Defence and Climate Change as you need to able to fully respond when words fail, but when other departments have run down as well then to look at holistic way which means long term which is unlike giving that today’s Pollies rather speak fancy words and in 30sec sound bites to please the masses as bad news tends to lose elections.

    A good example of this when the NZDF did an End of Action report of INTERFER and UN Peacekeeping Mission to East Timor as the then Labour Coalition want to make the NZDF a Peacekeeping Force in line with its Foreign and Aid Policies. The Airforce and Navy part of the EoAR got shit caned (A few dead rats had to eaten by the left) and the Army part of was Salami sliced as the report covered everything from Chap 1 to Chap7 Missions. We plan for worst case and hope for best case, in other words it’s easy to step down from Chap7 mission than it’s to step from Chap4 mission to suddenly a Chap6 and half missions then back to say a Chap5 and from his UN Peacekeeping Missions can be quite fluid to say the least with some nations finding out the hard way with lives lost incl NZ aka my ex tankie mate who later transferred to Infantry and was KIA in ET with NZBATT 2.

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