New Zealand paid 19% more produce export tariffs this year than in 2008

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New Zealand paid 19% more produce export tariffs this year than in 2008

Tariffs placed on fresh produce exports from New Zealand in receiving markets have cost the industry some NZD $235 million (US $ 179 million), up 19% since 2008, according to a report from industry associations.

The amount of export tariffs paid has increased 19% while the total earnings from New Zealand’s exports only increased by 8% in the same time period. On average, the tariffs paid to enter foreign markets costs each grower NZD $34,000.

The New Zealand Horticulture Export Authority and Horticulture New Zealand commission the report “New Zealand Horticulture – Barriers to Our Export Trade’” every two years, with funding support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and New Zealand Trade & Enterprise.

“Obviously as we sell more products in markets that have tariffs we pay more tariffs. We see some fantastic market opportunities in Asia but some of those markets have very high barriers to trade. That’s why we need to continue our efforts on developing and signing free trade agreements,” HortNZ chief executive Peter Silcock said.

But according to the report not only are economic barriers being placed on the country’s produce. There is a continuing trend of using other methods, – sanitary and phytosanitary barriers to bock entry of goods.

The European Union, Japan, Australia, and the United States  are New Zealand's top four horticultural export markets. The total value of exports are NZD $603 million for the EU, NZ $445 million for Japan, NZD $ 337 million for Australia and NZD $126 million for the US.

South Korea applies the highest average tariff rate of almost 41%, meaning New Zealand has paid some NZD $34 million this one market alone.

Kiwi exports to China have been responsible for China’s importance as a receiver to rise from NZD $20 million in 2008 to NZD $75 million in 2010.


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