It's been a long and sometimes bumpy road to achieving a Pacific Rim trade deal but New Zealand producers and our economy will soon reap the benefits, Federated Farmers President Katie Milne says.
"We're on the home straight. The required six nations have now ratified the 11-nation Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the countdown has started towards the first round of tariff cuts early next year.
"Federated Farmers has said from the outset that a Pacific Rim agreement would be a major boost to our ability to trade and New Zealand's future prosperity, as well as a useful antidote to the economic protectionism brewing in some other parts of the world," says Milne.
It's particularly good news for New Zealand beef farmers and horticulturalists but the potential to develop new technologies and economic partnerships while reducing business costs will be beneficial to Kiwis working across all industries.
The CPTPP is New Zealand's first free trade deal with Japan - the third largest economy in the world - and immediately removes the tariff advantage that Australia's beef producers have benefited from at New Zealand red meat farmers' cost.
"There are also fantastic opportunities for us in massive markets such as Canada and Mexico," says Milne.
"Federated Farmers congratulates the New Zealand negotiators who have doggedly pursued this deal, and the current Government for recognising that the CPTPP is, overall, a significant win for New Zealand."