August 1, 2011

 

New Zealand downplays dairy's threat to US

 

 

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key attempted to minimise concerns his country would flood the US with dairy products under a pending regional free trade pact, according to a Reuters report.

 

Key said he expected a big share of New Zealand's dairy exports to go to Asia and for the US to also benefit from that growing appetite.

 

"Our modelling shows that demand is huge in dairy, so there's no question that the US will be filling part of that demand," Key told reporters after a speech at the US Chamber of Commerce, a leading business group.

 

Many US dairy producers are worried about competition from New Zealand, a major dairy products exporter, under the proposed TransPacific Partnership (TPP) pact and want protection against increased imports.

 

Key, who was in Washington for talks with President Barack Obama and other top officials, argued the overall pact would be good for US agriculture even if US dairy producers faced more competition.

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