The agreement will address modern trade issues and improve trade rules and rules that are compatible with recent free trade agreements between Singapore and New Zealand. This new chapter establishes mechanisms for resolving business-to-business disputes more effectively and more quickly. The chapter also promotes good regulatory practices through cooperation between government regulators, particularly in areas related to goods and services. The closer economic partnership agreement between New Zealand and Singapore came into force on 1 January 2001. This is the most comprehensive trade agreement New Zealand has negotiated, with the exception of the agreement on closer economic relations with Australia. The CEP aims to establish close historical links between Singapore and New Zealand by improving trade opportunities for goods, services and investment. The CEP has paved the way for broader regional free trade agreements. In September 1999, New Zealand and Singapore announced that they would negotiate a trade agreement. New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark and Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong signed the Closer Economic Partnership Agreement between New Zealand and Singapore at a signing ceremony in Singapore on November 14, 2000. Singapore hosted the first ministerial review of the agreement in November 2001, while New Zealand hosted the second ministerial review of the agreement in July 2004.

Negotiations to upgrade the agreement began in 2017 with the development of trade rules in line with free trade agreements in Singapore and New Zealand, such as the ASEAN Australia New Zealand FTA (AANZFTA) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). “This modernized agreement will further reduce trade barriers and strengthen regulatory cooperation and e-commerce, benefiting businesses in our two countries. I look forward to deepening economic relations between our countries,” Chan said. The updated agreement adds the e-commerce and regulatory cooperation chapters to an ANZSCEP, Singapore`s first bilateral free trade agreement and The second bilateral free trade agreement of New Zealand (FTA) that came into force on 1 January 2001, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Monday (December 30th). As part of the ANZSCEP upgrade, the two countries signed a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) (trade agreement that facilitates market access) for a large number of sectors. At the end of December 2019, Singapore and New Zealand ratified the enhanced Closing Economic Partnership Agreement (ANZSCEP). The agreement came into force on January 1, 2020. In the two years since the agreement came into force, Singapore`s bilateral trade with New Zealand increased from $0.97 billion (2000) to $1.09 billion (2002), an increase of 12.6%.

In addition to their strong economic relations, Singapore and New Zealand work closely together in the defence field through platforms such as the Asean-Plus defence ministers` meeting and the five power defence agreements. Negotiations on the revalued ANZSCEP began in June 2017 as part of the trade and economic pillar of the strengthened Singapore-New Zealand partnership. The revalued ANZSCEP was signed on 17 May 2019 during new Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern`s first official visit to Singapore. In addition to improving market access, ANZSCEP is also taking economic cooperation between Singapore and New Zealand to new heights. In 2002, New Zealand established its first technology centre in Singapore to help New Zealand companies commercialize technologies and internationalize their operations.

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