Tackling trade barriers to help deliver Asia-Pacific prosperity

by | Nov 26, 2018 | Media Releases


Issued by the New Zealand International Business Forum (NZIBF).

 26 November 2018 – The NZ International Business Forum (NZIBF) congratulates the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) for its advocacy which has led to the adoption of a set of principles on non-tariff measures (NTMs) by APEC.

“Red tape, unscientific requirements, arbitrary technical regulations and other so-called ‘non-tariff barriers’, or NTBs, add costs and make trade more difficult,” said NZIBF Executive Director Stephen Jacobi.

“APEC Ministers, including our own Minister for Trade and Export Growth, David Parker, have endorsed a bold set of principles aimed at ensuring that these measures do not erode the benefits of trade for business and consumers in the region. This is a signal achievement,” commented Mr Jacobi.

Mr Jacobi noted that ABAC New Zealand member Katherine Rich and NZIBF’s Associate Director Stephanie Honey had led the development in ABAC of an ambitious set of WTO-consistent cross-cutting principles on NTMs and NTBs. Those principles had inspired New Zealand officials to push for the APEC approach.

“The NZ ABAC team has worked tirelessly over several years to develop the ABAC Principles,” said Mr Jacobi. “As part of that process we looked at how damaging NTBs are for agriculture and food exports, manufacturing, services and even digital trade,” he added.

“We are delighted to see those ideas now embraced by APEC Ministers,” said Katherine Rich, CEO of the NZ Food and Grocery Council. “At a time when global trade is facing significant headwinds, it has never been more important to affirm our commitment to open markets and to freeing up trade and investment. NTBs are part of that effort,” she added.

Mrs Rich warned that unless APEC continued to press ahead with deepening regional economic integration, economies would struggle to achieve their long-held vision of sustainable and inclusive growth and prosperity for the Asia-Pacific.

The New Zealand ABAC members are Katherine Rich, Phil O’Reilly of Iron Duke Partners and Tenby Powell of Hunter Powell Investments. Stephen Jacobi serves as Alternate Member and Stephanie Honey is the ABAC NZ policy advisor.

Note: The APEC Cross Cutting Principles on Non-Tariff Measures can be found here.

For further information.

Stephen Jacobi cell 0294 725 502. stephen@nzibf.co.nz

Katherine Rich cell 021 341 918. Katherine.rich@fgc.org.nz

www.tradeworks.org.nz   www.abaconline.org


Register to stay up to date with latest news, as well as saving and discussing articles you’re interested in.




Latest News

NZIBF 2022 Chair Report

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 2022 CHAIR’S REPORT I am pleased to present my second report on the activities and achievements of the NZ International Business Forum (NZIBF) for 2022-23, our fifteenth year of operations.  At the outset I would like to thank Members for...


New Zealand business will be represented at the APEC Leaders’ Week in Bangkok, commencing 13 November, by members of the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). New Zealand’s three members – Rachel Taulelei, Malcolm Johns and Anna Curzon – supported by Stephen Jacobi...

Submission to MFAT for CPTPP Review

30 September 2022 Phil Mellor Economic Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Wellington (By email) Dear Phil, Thank you for your email of 1 September, seeking our comments on the three year review of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans...


The now widespread use of the term “Indo Pacific” to describe the region to which New Zealand belongs brings a risk of geographical confusion. When did the “Asia Pacific” become the Indo Pacific?   For thirty years or more New Zealand has sought to enhance...

NZ Herald: Turbulence in global trade

Amidst the political topsy turvy of recent weeks came the news that the Government has refreshed its Trade Recovery Strategy.  That’s good news because, for exporters and the global economy as a whole, it’s tough out there. The pandemic is by no means over, there...

Address to World Affairs Forum, 22 August 2022

ADDRESS TO THE WORLD AFFAIRS FORUM AUCKLAND, 22 AUGUST 2022 STEPHEN JACOBI EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR NZ INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS FORUM TURBULENCE IN GLOBAL TRADE Thanks to Greg Thwaite for inviting me to speak to you this evening. It’s good to be back in the habit of meeting...

Trade and Climate Change: State of Play

TRADE AND CLIMATE CHANGE: STATE OF PLAY. A discussion paper prepared for the NZIBF by Adrian Macey, June 2022. Download here. Update: NZ-EU FTA The NZ-EU FTA has been finalised.  Article X.6 of the  trade and sustainable development chapter is on trade and...