Monday, July 15, 2024

High-tech exports enjoy US success

A new economic report has shown the important role the United States plays as an export market for high-value and high-technology New Zealand products as the country builds its COVID-19 recovery.

Trade and Export Growth Minister, Damien O’Connor says the report released by the NZUS Council titled The NZ-US trade relationship: stability and diversity in a time of change, shows that while the primary sector remains the top NZ exporter, digital services have become a major contributor.

“New Zealand is a trading nation and supporting our country’s hard-working exporters remains a priority for this Government. It’s crucial we show the diversification of high quality exports that New Zealand has to offer – and in doing so accelerate our economic recovery from COVID-19,” Mr O’Connor said.  

“The United States is New Zealand’s third largest trading partner overall and it is now our largest destination for services – receiving over 22 percent of our total service exports.

“Digital services are a major contributor, with NZ$682 million worth of exports to the US spread across computer services and software license exports. US trade and investment has also played a key role in the development of the New Zealand space industry.”

The report found New Zealand’s primary sector remains the backbone of exports to the United States, but showed a significant shift in the balance of products.

“It’s clear that we’re shifting up the value chain and away from a volume focus. American consumers are developing a taste for distinctive New Zealand primary products like wine and honey, which respectively earned $625 million and $75 million in 2020,” Minister O’Connor said.

“When it comes to our more traditional beef and sheep meat products, consumers are demanding a wider range of cuts. They’re also becoming significantly more conscious of the health benefits of our food and environmental upside of our production systems as evidenced by the successful Taste Pure Nature campaign.

“Changes in our dairy exports complement the high-tech trend, where we’re now seeing New Zealand dairy exports to the US diversified across a range of high value specialised dairy products. These products range from high quality whey protein to nutritional ingredients used in the sports, medical, and paediatric sectors.”

He said the report demonstrated that the USA was a vibrant market that sees value in the widest range of services and goods that New Zealand exports.

“Trade is vital to our economic recovery from COVID-19 and we will continue to support New Zealand companies doing business with the United States when the Prime Minister travels there, amongst other countries, on her trade mission later this year to further accelerate that recovery.”

“Our Trade for All agenda has very good momentum. We have just signed our historic FTA with the United Kingdom, our negotiations for one with the EU are progressing and we remain committed to opening up opportunity for New Zealand businesses abroad,” Mr O’Connor said.

The report was commissioned by the NZUS Council and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and was prepared by Sense Partners.

Link to the full report:

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