We're reviewing our approach to export regulation
New Zealand’s export assurance systems are trusted and working well. We want to continue to have the best regulatory settings for accessing overseas markets and growing New Zealand’s food and fibre exports sector.
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is reviewing its approach to regulating the export of food and fibre sector products.
This work is part of the Government and food and fibre sector roadmap, Fit for a Better World – accelerating our economic potential. One of the roadmap’s key goals is to add an additional $44 billion in export revenue by 2030.
We are in the early stages of the policy development process, and will consult with the public on any proposed options to strengthen our export legislation.
Any detailed proposals will then follow a parliamentary process, including consideration by Cabinet and select committee.
MPI's role in exporting
Official assurances are issued when importing governments require them as a condition of market access for the product. These assurances are required for a large proportion of New Zealand’s primary product exports. They confirm the products meet agreed criteria, which may include:
- relevant New Zealand regulatory requirements
- any additional requirements as agreed with an importing government.
Primary sector product groups include:
- animal products (dairy, meat, seafood, honey, wool)
- processed food and beverage
- grains and seeds
- fruit and vegetables
- animal and plant germplasm
- organic products
- pet food and livestock feed
- wood and wood products.
We help get products into markets
Official assurances act like a passport for products. The accuracy of the assurances must be able to be independently verified. This may mean operators need to have documented systems showing how they meet the requirements associated with any given assurances.
General export controls are also in place for official assurances. They include the ability to set requirements and trace the inputs of production. This helps to protect the integrity of the official assurances we provide and New Zealand’s credibility as a trusted exporter.
Export assurance systems regulation can be based on:
- legislation (the Animal Products Act or the Wine Act), or
- administrative systems (for example, the Plant Exports Standards).
Legislation provides the government with a range of tools to support the export assurance systems. It also gives exporters, trading partners, and all others confidence and certainty about the rules and decision-making processes.
The global trading environment is dynamic
As the global trading environment evolves, we need to constantly review our export assurance systems to ensure they withstand trading partner scrutiny.
Changes in the global trading environment include:
- evolving food safety and biosecurity risks and requirements
- new approaches to trade and distribution
- novel products, production systems, and export pathways
- sustainability considerations.
What the Export Legislation Project will achieve
We have strong legislative systems in place to facilitate trade for animal products and wine – both pieces of legislation contain tools to negotiate with trading partners to improve market access conditions. We want to streamline the existing legislative frameworks to ensure these same tools are available for all food and fibre sector exports. This will help to maintain and grow market access.
New streamlined legislation would ensure the right frameworks are in place to support export businesses, so we can continue to maintain trusted export assurance systems, respond to changes in the global trading environment, and support businesses seeking improved market access.
Creating new comprehensive legislation would aim to:
- give export businesses more certainty that the export system can support them to meet shifting and complex market access requirements
- enable the government to maintain and extend export assurance systems for any food or fibre product if it's required to facilitate trade
- give New Zealand the flexibility and the necessary legal tools to ensure our systems can respond to future changes and disruptions in the global trading environment
- better position the government to negotiate systems recognition arrangements which benefit export businesses through improving conditions of trade
- balance costs and benefits to exporters by ensuring government intervention is proportionate to risks.
The export legislation project does not seek to replace any existing legislation already in place or bills that are currently in the parliamentary process (like the Organic Products Bill and legislation for the legal harvest assurance system for timber).
We'll be working with interested parties as this project progresses and will update this web page with how to engage.
If you would like to share your views or interest now, email email@example.com