April 17, 2018 / 12:03 PM / 10 months ago

Merkel: Let's aim for modern free trade deal with New Zealand

BERLIN, April 17 (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday that the European Union should seek to negotiate a modern free trade agreement with New Zealand.

“We should have close relations between the European Union and New Zealand, especially in terms of trade, and we should aim for a modern free trade agreement that includes issues of social elements, climate protection, biodiversity and sustainability,” Merkel told a news conference.

Visiting New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said a free trade agreement with the EU would be an “opportunity to send a clear signal that not only does rules-based trade benefit us all but there is an opportunity to show our respective citizens the benefits that can develop from solid agreements”. (Reporting by Michelle Martin and Madeline Chambers)

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