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Monday, October 14, 2019

Chilean Treasury Minister announces New Zealand’s incorporation into the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action

Minister Felipe Larraín and his New Zealand counterpart highlighted the advantages of TPP11. The Asia-Pacific country has already ratified the agreement, resulting in an enormous boost in exports.

Santiago, October 15, 2019. Chilean Treasury Minister Felipe Larraín announced that New Zealand has joined the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action. Led by Chile and Finland, the Coalition seeks to encourage best practices and experiences in order to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

Supported by the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the IDB, the OECD and several agencies within the United Nations system, the incorporation of New Zealand brings the number of coalition members to 44.

The Treasury Minister and his New Zealand counterpart, Grant Robertson, made the announcement at the APEC Chile 2019 Finance Ministers’ Meeting.

“This is very good news. We have a lot in common with New Zealand. We are small countries removed from international commercial centers whose economies are based on natural resources,” said Minister Felipe Larraín, adding that the meeting of the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action is scheduled for December 9th, during COP25 in Santiago

Grant Robertson noted that combating climate change “is essential to the health of our environment as well as the future of the planet. It is also an economic issue on which Finance Ministers must take the lead,” he said.

He added that, like Chile, New Zealand has committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

A Call to approve the TPP11 agreement

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP11) was among the issues discussed at the bilateral meeting between Minister Felipe Larraín and his counterpart from New Zealand this morning.

Minister Larraín noted that New Zealand’s Congress approved the agreement in early 2018, leading to a strong boost for exports to markets where the was previously unable to enter.

“I want to reiterate the call to Congress. We need to quicken the pace and approve TPP11, particularly given the current trade war scenario. We expect that an agreement will be signed in Chile, but it has not happened yet (...). Access to new markets is especially important for export recovery. More than 3,000 Chilean products will benefit from greater access under TPP11,” said Felipe Larraín.

Grant Robertson endorsed Minister Larraín’s statement, remarking that TPP11 has allowed New Zealand to increase exports. “Our meat exports to Japan are up 300% as a result of joining TPP11. We have also seen significant increases in our butter and cheese exports to Canada and Mexico. It has been a great boost to our economy,” pointed out the New Zealand Finance Minister.

APEC Chile 2019

Minister Felipe Larraín led the Finance Ministers’ Meeting today as part of APEC Chile 2019.

In his opening address, he highlighted the importance of holding the APEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting this year in Chile, “a small, stable economy that is open to the global economy.”

“While geographically removed from the main economic centers, Chile has been steadily expanding its international presence, contributing to global liberalization of trade and investment,” he stated.

Minister Larraín added that Chile is working to become a regional financial center and to make its economy a platform for investment. “It is an ambitious goal and we expect to see progress. There are smaller countries that are first-rate financial centers,” he said.

He also noted that if the USA and China sign an agreement to end the trade war, it would be a major milestone for the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, which will be held in Santiago in November. “We hope that it will happen,” he said.