National has released trade policy to complete or start seven free trade deals - which it says will unlock markets with 2.5 billion people.

Labour has hit back at the Government's record on trade, saying National had not met previous promises to increse exports, and had "traded away" future governments' rights to ban foreign buyers of property.

"There's nothing new in this except for lining-up National's wishlist of deals," Labour's trade spokesman David Parker said of today's announcement.

Trade Minister Todd McClay outlined what he called New Zealand's "boldest-ever trade push" in Pukekohe today - contrasting the package with Labour's recent opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).


"We have a once in a generation chance to tear down trade barriers and only National is willing to take this opportunity," McClay said.

"We will work to unlock markets with 2.5 billion new consumers for the benefit of large and small exporters...this new trade access will create shiploads of jobs for Kiwis and be worth billions of dollars to our economy and businesses across the country.

"Collectively, the new trade deals will advance New Zealand's free trade goods exports coverage from 53 per cent to 78 per cent.

McClay said the plan includes pushing to complete TPP 11. The original Trans-Pacific Partnership was signed in 2016 by 12 Pacific rim nations but had not entered into force. A spanner was thrown in the works when US President Donald Trump signed a Presidential Memorandum to withdraw the US from TPP in January.

Representatives, however, from the 11 remaining members have met several times this year and agreed to launch a process to assess options to bring the so-called TPP 11 into force expeditiously.

"Our opponents want to stop and re-negotiate the whole package. That would set the cause of New Zealand trade access back many years," McClay said. "National is the only party for voters serious about trade."

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern today would not rule out pulling out of the TPP if the 10 other countries refused to renegotiate if Labour was in power after the election.

The main concern for Labour was that the TPP did not allow for Labour's policy of banning foreigners from buying New Zealand land. One of the key dates for the TPP11 talks will be APEC in November when talks will take place on the sidelines.

Asked whether Labour would pull New Zealand out if the other countries did not agree to renegotiating at that point, Ardern said it had always been Labour's bottom line for support.

"We've always made it clear that was a bottom line for us."

Ardern said the Government should take into account Labour's position during any TPP negotiations leading up to the election.

"They should use that opportunity to renegotiate around housing. How do we know the other countries won't renegotiate? The Government has not gone into bat for our right to try and maintain a residential housing market for New Zealanders and ban foreign speculators. So we don't know if they won't renegotiate it."

So we will try and re-negotiate that," Ardern said.

As part of today's trade policy, National has pledged to seek FTAs with:

• the European Union

• the United Kingdom, after Brexit is completed

• Sri Lanka

• Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay (Mercosur)

National says it will also seek to complete negotiations with:

• TPP 11

• Mexico, Chile, Colombia and Peru (the Pacific Alliance)

• Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (Rcep) countries

McClay said National will also seek to upgrade existing FTAs with China, Singapore and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean).

He said National would "push for greater access for Kiwi businesses" to India, Russia and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries in the Middle East.

Progress on getting an FTA over the line with the Gulf countries has stalled after fallout between Qatar and other council members.

New Zealand spent more than $11.5 million to fly almost 1000 sheep to Saudi Arabia and help set up a demonstration farm there in an effort to progress the Gulf States FTA. The farm is owned by businessman Sheikh Hamood Al Ali Khalaf, who was unhappy with the Government's handling of its ban on live sheep exports for slaughter.

In November last year Auditor-General Lyn Provost concluded the spending of public money on the farm was not corrupt but had "significant shortcomings".

Labour's trade spokesman David Parker said National had failed on the TPP and the Gulf States FTA.

"By downgrading the Gulf States agreement, which the government in March told New Zealanders they were 'very optimistic the deal would be finalised this year', it looks like they've wasted $12 million on the dodgy Saudi sheep deal."