Monday, February 26, 2024

Prime Minister to attend EAS, APEC leaders’ meetings

Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern will depart Aotearoa on Saturday to attend the annual East Asia Summit (EAS) in Cambodia, ahead of representing New Zealand at APEC Economic Leaders Week in Thailand.

“Reconnecting New Zealand with the world while actively strengthening partnerships between government, business and industry is an essential part of our economic recovery plan,” Ms Ardern said.

The Prime Minister will fly to Phnom Penh, Cambodia for the EAS, undertake bilateral meetings with leaders, and attend related Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) events.

“I’m looking forward to reconnecting with Leaders to discuss ways we can jointly address the shared economic and security challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region like supply chain issues causing cost of living pressures on citizens, through to the geo political tensions facing our region,” she said.

“I’ll be specifically focused on exploring ways to continue strengthening our trading relationships with partners to provide greater economic security for all New Zealanders. The range of complex regional and global issues, including the situation in Myanmar, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the importance of multilateralism, will also be high on the agenda.”

Following the East Asia Summit in Cambodia and before travelling to APEC, Prime Minister Ardern, accompanied by Trade Minister, Damien O’Connor, will use their time in the region to lead a business delegation to Viet Nam, visiting both Ha Noi and Ho Chi Minh City.

“This trade mission will be our fourth alongside New Zealand businesses this year, we are committed to do everything we can to open doors, and support businesses to foster the economic opportunities that reconnecting with the world presents,” the Prime Minister said.

“The 18 strong business delegation is made up of some of New Zealand’s most successful businesses, spanning our food and beverage, aviation, tech and service and sustainability sectors who we want to keep supporting, and see them grow,” she said.

“Vietnam’s emerging and dynamic market presents new economic opportunities for many New Zealand businesses, building on what is already a significant trade relationship worth over $2.3 billion in two way trade in the year ending June 2022,” Minister O’Connor said.

The Prime Minister will support businesses through a range of events including new business store openings and product launches, business leaders’ networking, showcasing New Zealand agriculture and education, and promoting New Zealand tourism through the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 for which Viet Nam has already qualified.

The Prime Minister will meet Young Business Leaders and the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and will give the keynote address at the Forbes Women Summit.

She will also have bilateral meetings with H.E. Pham Minh Chinh, Prime Minister of Viet Nam, and other senior Viet Nam leaders including H.E. Nguyen Xuan Phuc, President of Viet Nam, with a mind towards strengthening the Strategic Partnership and exchanging perspectives on key regional and global issues.

Prime Minister Ardern will then travel to Bangkok to represent New Zealand at the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, and will speak at the APEC CEO Summit, and undertake a range of bilateral meetings with counterparts.

This will be the first time that the APEC Leaders’ meeting is held in person since 2018, and follows New Zealand’s chairing of APEC in 2021.

“With major risks to the global recovery and serious geo political tensions, I’ll discuss with other leaders about what we can do together to help relieve the pressures in our region while maintaining sustainable economic growth,” Ms Ardern said. 

“There is no easy answer, and solutions will not come easily, but maintaining dialogue and finding common ground on areas we can all cooperate is the only sensible way through these currently turbulent times we all find ourselves in.” 

The Prime Minister will be travelling on a NZDF flight and will return to New Zealand on Sunday 20 November. 

Latest Articles