New Zealand PM intends to head a trade mission to China
NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern intends to head a trade mission to China early in 2023.
As her country emerges from the pandemic, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern stated on Friday that she intends to lead a trade trip to one of New Zealand's largest trade partners, China, once border conditions got amended to permit travel.
Ardern said that during discussions with Chinese President Xi Jinping last month at the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) conference in Bangkok—their first face-to-face encounter since 2018—she had indicated her intention to visit.
During a meeting celebrating 50 years of diplomatic relations at the New Zealand-China Council in Auckland, Ardern said "I do hope to return to China in person when the settings allow, and I discussed with the President our ambition of taking a trade mission into China early next year – a plan that was welcomed by the President."
Ardern stated that New Zealand's relationship with China was significant, yet complex and evolving, adding that we continue to acknowledge that there are areas in which China and New Zealand disagree, where our interests or worldviews diverged.
The PM emphasized that despite differences, New Zealand will continue to engage while also standing up for its interests and values.
"We do this predictably, consistently and respectfully," she said.
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