Air New Zealand has signed a deal with an Argentine Government tourism body and both will now work together to promote tourism and trade.

The airline and Argentina's National Institute of Tourism Promotion today put their names to a memorandum of understanding at a small ceremony in Buenos Aires.

The agreement, signed by outgoing Tourism Minister Carlos Enrique Meyer, won't be impacted by Argentina's change of Government following last month's elections.

READ MORE:
Richie McCaw: 'Horses scare me'
Let's tango - Air NZ heads to Argentina
Air NZ makes big leap into South America

Advertisement

The deal comes a day after Air New Zealand's inaugural service to Buenos Aires touched down in Argentina.

Air New Zealand chief strategy, networks and alliances officer, Stephen Jones, who signed for the company, said the agreement strengthened the ties between Argentina and New Zealand and "built on the great rugby-playing tradition that we share".

The agreement, according to Air New Zealand, will see the parties work together on "mutually beneficial business engagements".

Watch: Air NZ touches down in Argentina:

Air New Zealand's flights from Auckland to Buenos Aires begin today, boosting competition in the travel market between this country and South America. Among the passengers on this evening's inaugural flight is former All Black captain Richie McCaw, who recently re-signed as an Air New Zealand brand ambassador for a further two years.

This includes helping boost demand for off-peak travel from New Zealand and Australia to Argentina.

"The new route will make it possible to foster and develop tourism as well as open up new business and investment opportunities for businesspeople in both countries," Meyer said.

Associate Tourism Minister Paula Bennett spoke during the signing ceremony, although the Government was not a signatory.

The New Zealand Government very much supports this agreement and obviously we're very thrilled that Air New Zealand are now flying direct to Buenos Aires and what that means for movement of our peoples between the two countries.

Bennett couldn't seem to help herself from bringing up former All Black Richie McCaw during her speech to Argentine media and officials.

Advertisement

Watch:Richie McCaw welcomed to Argentina:

Air New Zealand's inaugural flight to Argentina has just touched down in Buenos Aires, welcomed by performances from a kapa haka group and tango dancers.

"I feel I should be very clear that he's here to visit and you may not keep him...we do not want to see him play for Argentina. So I will make sure he's on the flight home at the end of the week."

Jones gave the Argentine Tourism Minister a wooden koru and in turn was presented with a horse whip.

"It's for the horses, so we're told," Bennett said.

Watch: Richie McCaw on long haul travel now he's no longer an All Black:

Air New Zealand's flights from Auckland to Buenos Aires begin today, boosting competition in the travel market between this country and South America. Among the passengers on this evening's inaugural flight is former All Black captain Richie McCaw, who recently re-signed as an Air New Zealand brand ambassador for a further two years.