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Boosting trade and economic growth

The European Union (EU) is a large and important trading partner of New Zealand. With the introduction of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), trade is expected to increase by another 30%, creating economic opportunities for businesses. The elimination of certain tariffs is expected to save €140 million in taxes.

Tariff benefits and import duties

The agreement ensures that goods of preferential origin from New Zealand can be imported into the EU at reduced or no tariffs. This also applies to goods exported to New Zealand from the EU. Not all goods will receive zero tariffs immediately; for some goods, import duties will be phased out. Tariffs will continue to apply to goods such as beef, mutton and butter.

Conditions for tariff preference

To benefit from the favourable tariffs, there are some conditions to be met. The EU and New Zealand have adopted rules on product origin. If a product is processed in the country of either party, it can benefit from the tariff preferences of the agreement. The importer must provide proof of preferential origin through a prescribed declaration of origin.

Rules of origin

The rules of origin are described in Article 3.2 of the FTA. Goods must meet the following conditions for the application of preferential tariff treatment:

  • Wholly obtained in that Party within the meaning of Article 3.4 (Wholly obtained products);
  • Produced in that Party exclusively from originating materials; or
  • Produced in that Party incorporating non-originating materials provided that the product satisfies the requirements set out in Annex 3-B (Product-specific rules of origin).

Article 3.4 of the FTA explains when goods are wholly obtained in a batch. Examples include: a plant grown or harvested in a party, a live animal born and raised in a party and a mineral substance extracted from the soil of a batch.

Preferential tariff treatment and proof of origin

The importer grants preferential tariff treatment to a product originating in the other party based on a claim by the importer for preferential tariff treatment. A claim for preferential tariff treatment is based on one of the points below, see Article 3.16:

  • A statement on origin that the product is originating made out by the exporter; or
  • The importer’s knowledge that the product is originating.

    Statement on origin

    The statement on origin must contain the following information, as set out in Annex 3-C of the FTA:

    • In case of multiple shipments: period from … to …
    • The exporter of the products covered by in this document (Exporter Reference No …) declares that, except where otherwise clearly indicated, the products are of … preferential origin.
    • Place and date
    • Name of the exporter

    A statement on origin is valid for one year from the date it was made and may apply to:

    • A single consignment of one or more products imported in one batch; or;
    • Multiple consignments of identical products imported into a batch within the period of up to 12 months specified in the statement.

    When does the EU-NZ free trade agreement enter into force?

    The EU-New Zealand trade agreement entered into force on the 1st of May 2024, which means you can already make use of the benefits now.

    Where can I find more information on the agreement?

    Find out more information on the website of the European Commission and consult EUR-Lex regulation 2024/866 for the full agreement.

    Start taking benefit of the FTA

    Need help using the EU-NZ free trade agreement to your advantage? Contact our customs experts by filling out the form on the right and a member of our team will respond within one business day.