On Tuesday, China and New Zealand had signed off a deal aimed at upgrading an existing free trade pact which in effect would provide the Pacific economy’s exports with a greater access into the world’s second-largest economy, while Beijing had harshly criticized the thoughts of a “Cold War” alongside protectionisms in global economy.
Nonetheless, Beijing’s latest trade deal with New Zealand came forth at a time while the Pacific nation’s closest neighbour, Australia, had been engaged in a rattling trade battle with China as the pro-CCP-backed Chinese Government had accused Canberra alongside Morrison Government of politicising economic, investment and technological issues.
Aside from that, while Australia, which had witnessed up to 212.5 per cent tariff hike on its wine exports into China alongside an 80.5 per cent tariff on its Barley since June last year, had brought in World Trade Organization (WTO) to solve the tariff dispute with Beijing, a spokesperson for Chinese Commerce Ministry was quoted saying later last year that the Morrison Administration might be dressed up like a victim, but had been dumping its exports for months while following the footprints of US Government, eventually escalating the trade rows furthers.
Besides, China had also barred exports of Australian coal last year, stranding energy exports in the largest economy in Oceania.
China seals free trade deal with New Zealand
Apart from that, followed by the latest China move to expand a free trade treaty with New Zealand, analysts suggested that the latest Beijing move could be contemplated as an approach to establish itself as a strong advocate of multilateralism following a tattering trade war with the United States.
China, in tandem, had signed off an investment pact with EU in recent months and had joined the world’s largest free trade pact, the 15-member RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership) that included New Zealand as well.
Meanwhile, adding that the terms of new trade deal would remove or slash tariffs on most New Zealand exports to China ranging from dairy to timber to seafood while expanding an existing trade deal by another decade, New Zealand’s Centre-left Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern of Labour Party, said in a press conference, “China remains one of our most important trade partners...For this to take place during the global economic crisis brought about by COVID-19 makes it particularly important.”