Trade balance for the last 5 years – exports, imports, balance
New Zealand is highly dependent on foreign trade, specifically the export of agricultural products, especially dairy products, meat, wool, fruit, vegetables, fish and other items. Foreign trade accounts for about 30% of New Zealand’s GDP. Mainly engineering products, vehicles, oil and oil products, and electronics are imported to New Zealand. New Zealand’s main trading partners are traditionally Australia, China, the EU, Japan and the USA.
|Trade balance 2014-2019 (NZD billion)|
|Export||67 475||70 870||76 300||82 463||83 600|
|Importation||65 137||67 229||72 200||80 800||81 900|
|Balance||2 337||3 641||4 200||1 663||1 700|
The development of New Zealand’s trade balance during the year is linked to the seasonality of the export of agricultural products and their world prices. NZ’s most important export commodities include meat, dairy products, timber, fruit, vegetables and nuts, fish and wool.
NZ exports of goods and services reached NZD 8billion in 2019. NZ imports totaled NZD 8billion in 2019. Foreign trade ended in a surplus of NZD billion. Of the total exports, the export of goods amounted to NZD 58.4 billion.
The three largest trading partners – China, Australia and the EU – account for almost half of NZ’s total foreign trade. The main export destinations are China and Australia, NZ imports mainly from the EU and Australia.
Territorial structure – position in (k) EU
In 2019, the largest share of NZ exports went to China (NZD 18.14 billion) and Australia (NZD 14.16 billion). In 2018, China overtook Australia in total trade volume for the first time.
|NZ export to selected countries in NZD billion|
|Australia||12 994||12 966||13 623||14 128||14 157|
|China||10 342||12 110||14 816||17 329||18 148|
|USA||7 920||8 314||8 461||8 707||8 981|
|Japan||3 617||3 881||4 087||4 423||4 461|
|South Korea||2 085||2 162||1 992||2 345||2 330|
|EU||8 098||8 805||8 614||5 600||9 402|
The most important import partners are the EU (NZD 14 billion) and the PRC (NZD 13 billion), followed by Australia, the USA, Japan, and Singapore. Of the economic groupings, APEC and ASEAN countries traditionally have the largest share of imports. Among the top exports are dairy products and timber to the PRC (NZD billion and NZD billion).
In 2019, the import of goods from the EU amounted to over 11 billion NZD, while the import of services amounted to billion NZD. The most important item of NZ imports from the EU are motor vehicles (billion NZD). The EU’s most important export items to New Zealand also include pharmaceutical products, machinery and equipment, pharmaceutical products, aircraft and their components, electrical equipment and equipment.
|NZ imports from selected countries in NZD billion|
|Australia||11 333||11 263||11 956||12 635||12 786|
|China||9 454||10 758||11 265||12 848||13 089|
|USA||8 012||7 937||8 522||9 338||9 373|
|Japan||3 332||3 354||4 071||2 364||4 536|
|South Korea||2 179||2 204||2 042||2 894||2845|
|European Union||11 521||12 118||12 981||10 700||14 377|
In 2019, the most important export items were milk and milk products, tourism services, meat and offal, wood and wood products. The largest number of dairy products, wood and wooden sayings, meat and offal were exported to China, the EU and Australia were the largest buyers of tourism services.
|Commodity structure of exports 2019 – top ten|
|Kind of goods||Export value in billion NZD|
|Milk and milk products||14 794|
|Business and private travel||11 251|
|Meat and offal||7 631|
|Wood and wood products||5 385|
|Educational travel||1 864|
|Air Transport||2 606|
|Milk mixtures, cereals, flour, starch||2 051|
|Machines and machinery||1 865|
New Zealand’s imports are dominated by automobiles, parts and accessories, mechanical machinery and equipment, business and other private travel services, and mineral fuels.
|Commodity structure of imports for the period 2019 – top ten|
|Kind of goods||Value of imports in billion NZD|
|Vehicles and equipment||8 666|
|Mechanical machinery and equipment||8 543|
|Petroleum products||7 389|
|Business and private travel||6 523|
|Electrical machinery and equipment||5 032|
|Other business services||3 547|
|Textiles and textile products||2 680|
|Air Transport||2 676|
|Plastic and plastic products||2 226|
|Naval transport||2 153|
Investments – foreign direct investments in the territory (sectoral and territorial structure)
The NZ government has one of its priorities to increase the inflow of foreign direct investment to all parts of NZ, which it states in its “Investment Attraction Strategy” from 2015. Another essential document for the development of the NZ economy, including investment, is the Business Growth Agenda 2017 Refresh.
Foreign direct investment was worth NZD 113 billion as of March 2019. Most investments in New Zealand come from Australia, Hong Kong, USA, Japan, Great Britain. The largest share of investments falls into financial and insurance services and the primary sector.
|FDI in New Zealand in millions of NZD as of June of the given year|
|Australia||52 184||51 166||55 958||56 900|
|Hongkong||5 235||5 422||6 990||9 600|
|Japan||4 833||4 925||5 519||5 600|
|Great Britain||5 016||5 643||5 663||5 300|
|USA||8 205||7 787||9 190||9 400|
|In total||100 608||98 661||107 664||113 000|
Source: Scoop portal, www.stats.govt.nz
Investments – conditions for entry of foreign capital (restrictions, incentives for investors)
New Zealand is a traditional importer of capital, which helps the internationalization of the economy and the country’s competitiveness. Foreign investments are monitored by the OIO (Overseas Investment Office). An Overseas Person must receive approval to invest in the following cases:
- purchase of so-called “sensitive land”
- purchase of commercial property for more than NZD 100 million
- fishing quotas
The above restrictions do not apply to foreigners who permanently live in New Zealand, so-called permanent residents.
Foreign investment is regulated by The Overseas Investment Pact and Regulations 2005. Since 2011, the OIO office has been guided by the directive of the Minister of Finance, especially in relation to the purchase of land. In general, a foreign investor cannot buy a plot of land 10 times larger than the average farm size.
There are no specific investment incentives, a stable economic environment, advanced functioning infrastructure and trouble-free law enforcement are considered sufficient for the country’s investment attractiveness. New Zealand has traditionally been at the forefront of global rankings of competitiveness and economic freedom. New Zealand offers permanent residency for investors over NZD million (with the requirement of English proficiency and a minimum five-month stay per year) and over NZD 10 million, for whom the requirement of English proficiency is waived and it is sufficient to spend 44 days out of three years in New Zealand Zealand.
On 22 November 2018, a ban on the purchase of real estate ( Overseas Investment Amendment Bill ) by non-resident aliens, with the exception of citizens of Australia and Singapore covered by mutual free trade agreements, came into force. With increasing foreign investment in real estate in mind, the ban was introduced primarily to increase housing affordability for New Zealanders.
The Delegation of the European Union has been operating in Wellington since May 2004. Its leader and ambassador is Mr. Bernard Savage.
Representation of the EU in the country
Postal Address: PO Box 5106
Address: Level 14, Solnet House
70 The Terrace
Wellington 6011, NEW ZEALAND
Tel.: +64 4 472 9145
The country’s trade relations with the EU
The cooperation between New Zealand and the EU is currently based on the Partnership Agreement on Relations and Cooperation (PARC) between New Zealand and the EU, which has been in force since 1999. At a joint meeting in Brussels on 29 October 2015, President Juncker, President of the European Council Tusk and NZ Prime Minister Key agreed to start the negotiation process of the future NZ-EU FTA. The so-called scoping exercises were completed in March 2017. The 1st and 2nd round of negotiations took place in June and October 2018. In 2019, four more rounds of negotiations took place in February in Brussels, in May in Wellington, in July again in Brussels and in December again in Wellington. So far, the last round of negotiations took place via video conference on March 30 – April 9, 2020.
The EU is the third largest trading partner for New Zealand, trade in goods and services with the EU accounts for 13.5% of the total trade exchange of goods and services for New Zealand. NZ exports to the EU (outside Great Britain) reached NZD billion in 2019, while imports from the EU reached NZD 12.11 billion. The largest items of NZ exports to the EU in 2019 were meat, fruit and wine, seafood. The main imports from the EU to NZ are machinery and machinery, automobiles and their spare parts and accessories, aircraft and parts, medicines and pharmaceuticals.
From the EU-NZ FTA, the New Zealand side expects a NZD 1.2-2 billion increase in NZ GDP, a 20% increase in exports from the EU and a reduction in tariff and non-tariff barriers. Food production (the EU’s interest in protecting geographical indications of origin for food, especially cheese) and the length of patent protection for biological drugs (NZ has set it to 5 years, while the EU has extended it in some trade agreements to up to 10) are perceived as problematic points of negotiation. years; NZ fears increase in drug prices). In early December 2019, the NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) released a document in which it seeks to accede to one of the EU’s key proposals in the EU-NZ FTA negotiations on the protection of geographical indications. MFAT has announced that the EU has put forward proposals, the adoption of which would cause significant changes to existing GI legislation. The EU requires
Due to Brexit in February, New Zealand is dealing with the protection of the status of current meat export quotas between New Zealand – the EU and the post-Brexit UK.
In mid-September, UK Trade Secretary Liz Truss visited NZ to discuss a post-Brexit free trade deal with her NZ counterpart, David Parker. Truss said New Zealand was a priority country for Britain to reach a joint Free Trade Agreement.
Provision of development funds and EU instruments
The EU ranks New Zealand among the program countries that can receive funds from the Partnership Instrument. The EU supports student mobility as well as the mobility of teachers and researchers within the framework of Erasmus+.