New Zealand seeks to strengthen trade ties with UAE

ABU DHABI, 9th February, 2015 (WAM) — Todd McClay, Assistant Minister for Trade in New Zealand, has said that he would work during his official visit to the United Arab Emirates, which started today, to strengthen his country’s commitment to partner with the UAE in several areas, including food security, infrastructure and services.

McClay’s visit to the UAE comes as part of a week-long tour of the Gulf, which also includes Saudi Arabia and Qatar, where he will meet a number of government and private sector representatives.

He said that his visit to the region “is an opportunity to strengthen relations with the United Arab Emirates and the Gulf Cooperation Council for Arab States (GCC).” McClay pointed out that the visit will also be an opportunity to share New Zealand’s experiences in the areas of asset management and government services, and also to build on the strong relationship that New Zealand has with the Gulf region. He said he will also use the visit to meet with representatives of a number of New Zealand companies operating in the UAE.

He stressed the support of New Zealand to the UAE in hosting Expo 2020.

On his part, Jeremy Clark Watson, Ambassador of New Zealand to the UAE, said the UAE occupies 11th rank among the top trading partners of New Zealand and “is an important logistical hub for New Zealand companies. This leads to a strong growth in exports and opens new opportunities in the market for New Zealand’s food, technology, health and aviation companies.

The total value of trade between the UAE and New Zealand stood at $1.6 billion, while New Zealand’s exports to the UAE touched $845 million.