Love thy neighbour

The trading partnership between Australia and New Zealand is a strong one. With the earliest trade agreement between the two countries dating back to 1922,

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The trading partnership between Australia and New Zealand is a strong one. With the earliest trade agreement between the two countries dating back to 1922, the current relationship was formalised in 1983 with the adoption of the Australia–New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (ANZCERTA).

Capital: Wellington

Population: 4,599,488 (16 March 2016)

GDP: US$170.6bn (2015)

Real GDP growth 2016: 2.4% (Focus Economics forecast)

Trade with Australia: Two-way goods and services trade reached $23.65bn in 2015

Trade rank: Australia’s sixth-largest two-way trading partner

Source: DFAT

The lowdown

ANZCERTA was Australia’s first bilateral trade agreement, and has been recognised by the World Trade Organization as one of the most open and successful in the world. It covers all trans-Tasman trade in goods and services.

Since it was first adopted, two-way trans-Tasman merchandise trade has increased at an annual rate averaging around 8 per cent, and in 2015 was worth more than AU$16bn.

There is also a strong investment relationship between the two countries, with Australia being the third-largest investor in New Zealand, and New Zealand ranking 12th among the countries that invest in Australia.

Significantly, more than 50 per cent of Australia’s total investment in New Zealand is foreign direct investment, which demonstrates the extent of economic integration between the countries.

You might not know:  In 2015 the World Bank ranked New Zealand as the easiest place in the world to start a business and the world’s second-easiest country to do business in generally (doingbusiness.org/rankings).

Doing business in New Zealand

As you might expect, given our proximity and historically close relations, New Zealand business etiquette is very similar to Australian.

  • To cement business relations, face-to-face meetings are very important.
  • Unlike in some other business cultures, in New Zealand it is expected that you should reply promptly to enquiries.
  • For meetings, plan well in advance. If the meeting is unsolicited, allow as much as four weeks’ notice.
  • Punctuality is important.
  • As is the case in Australia, people often take leave during school holidays, so be sure you know when these fall before trying to set up meetings.
Source: Austrade

Key resources

There are a variety of resources available to help Australian businesses interested in trade with New Zealand, including:

  • New Zealand Companies Office – business.govt.nz/companies/help-support/doing-business-in-nz
  • New Zealand Immigration – newzealandnow.govt.nz/investing-in-nz
  • New Zealand Inland Revenue Department – ird.govt.nz/yoursituation-nonres/australian/non-res-aust-nz-index.html
  • New Zealand Trade & Enterprise – nzte.govt.nz/en/invest/new-zealands-investment-advantage
  • Trans Tasman Business Circle – buscircle.com/public_htm
Source: World Bank Group