Jacinda Ardern would be entitled to a little gloating after coming away with an upgrade to the China free trade agreement at the East Asia Summit.

It is not a brilliant deal. No trade agreement is.

But the fact that it is finished should silence those critics who take cheap shots at her official trips abroad.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with China's Premier Li Keqiang at the ASEAN summit in Bangkok. Photo / Supplied
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with China's Premier Li Keqiang at the ASEAN summit in Bangkok. Photo / Supplied

She and Premier Li Keqiang made the announcement at the start of a bilateral meeting in Bangkok - their fourth meeting in two years.

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Another visit by Ardern to Beijing appears on the cards.

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