Free Trade Agreements

Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) assist New Zealand traders (exporters and importers) by providing improved access to partner markets, and reducing trade barriers (such as Customs procedures) in those markets.


As well as other things, an FTA establishes:

  • preferential tariff rates for goods imported into the countries party to that Agreement
  • rules by which goods can qualify for those preferential tariffs (rules of origin)
  • customs procedures for claiming preferential tariff rates (rules of origin procedures)
  • general principles for customs procedures among the countries party to an Agreement.

Additional information is available on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) website.

ASEAN–Australia–New Zealand Free Trade Area Agreement (AANZFTA)

The ASEAN–Australia–New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA) is a regional trade agreement including the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), Australia and New Zealand. AANZFTA came into force in 2010 for Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Myanmar, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, and subsequently, entered into force for Laos and Cambodia in 2011, and Indonesia in 2012.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Claiming Preference in an AANZFTA Country – Certificates of Origin

The AANZFTA Agreement requires third party issued certificates of origin when exporting to an ASEAN member. Exporters (who want their goods to receive preferential tariff treatment upon importation) must obtain a certificate of origin from one of New Zealand’s certifying bodies before exporting their goods under this Agreement. A list of certifying bodies is set out in Fact Sheet 43.

Fact sheets

External Links

  • Useful information on the AANZFTA agreement, including text, a tariff finder tool and guides to doing business in Asia, can be found at ASEAN website
  • Information is also available on the MFAT website.

New Zealand also has bilateral trade Agreements with Malaysia, Australia and Thailand. Traders should consider which agreement provides the most benefit for their imported/exported products.

New Zealand Customs Notices

The First Protocol will enter into force for New Zealand and nine of the 12 AANZFTA Parties on 1 October 2015; and the remaining two Parties (Cambodia and Indonesia) are targeting implementation on 1 January 2016. Further information on the Protocol changes is in the Guide for Business: Using the First Protocol (PDF 527 KB) which includes the ‘Transitional guidelines for completing the information on the origin conferring criterion on the certificate of origin (CoO) form of the AANZFTA’.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

Australia–New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (ANZCERTA)

The Australia–New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (ANZCERTA) came into force on 1 January 1983. The rules of origin determine which products count as “Australian” or “New Zealand” products. They are then eligible to enter the markets in either country at a zero tariff rate. The rules establish what level of processing or manufacturing needs to be achieved on a product by product basis.

Revised rules of origin for trans-Tasman trade came into effect on 1 September 2011. Information on the rules of origin for ANZCERTA, and general guide for using the agreement can be found in Fact Sheet 20 (PDF 247 KB). Further information is also available on the MFAT website.

Australia is also a Party to the ASEAN-Australia New Zealand Free Trade Area Agreement. Traders should consider which agreement provides the most benefit for their imported/exported products.

Claiming Preference in Australia

The Australia Customs and Border Protection Service require the exporter to declare that the good meets the originating criteria under the Agreement, and which origin criteria the good meets.

For further information on claiming preference in Australia, see the Australian Customs website.

A sample declaration can be used to declare the origin of the goods, and should accompany goods exported to Australia that are claiming preferential tariff treatment.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

New Zealand Customs Notices

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

Generalised System of Preferences (LDC and LLDC countries)

The Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) is an international system of tariff preference designed to promote economic growth of developing countries. In accordance with the Generalised System of Preferences, New Zealand grants special treatment to certain goods that are the produce or manufacture of countries recognised as a Less Developed Country (LDC) or as a Least Developed Country (LLDC).

The countries entitled to preferential tariff treatment under the Generalised System of Preferences are set out in Schedules 1 and 2 to the Tariff (Less Developed Countries and Least Developed Countries) Order 2005. A list of LDC and LLDC countries is located in the Working Tariff Document of New Zealand (PDF 124 KB) under ‘New Zealand Alphabetical Country List and Codes’.

The LDC and LLDC tariff duty rates are identified under the abbreviations ‘LDC’ and ‘LLDC’ respectively in the Working Tariff Document of New Zealand. Further information is set out in Fact Sheet 8 (PDF 671 KB).

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

New Zealand–China Free Trade Agreement

The New Zealand–China Free Trade Agreement (NZCFTA) entered into force on 1 October 2008. New Zealand was the first OECD country to sign a comprehensive free trade agreement with China.

On 1 October 2016, a change to the Customs Export Entry Rules 1997 comes into effect, making it necessary to enter the Certificate of Origin (COO) number in the export entry declaration, where tariff preference is requested. You can find further information on the process and frequently asked questions on the COO data for export entries to China notice.

Claiming Preference in China – Certificates of Origin

China requires all imports claiming preference under the NZCFTA to be accompanied by a certificate of origin issued by an authorised certifying body of New Zealand. A certificate of origin can be obtained from one of New Zealand’s certifying bodies, which are listed in Fact Sheet 38 (PDF 754 KB).

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Transhipment

Goods may transit through a non-party to the Agreement and maintain preference. However, the goods may not enter the trade or commerce of a non-party, or undergo certain operations other than unloading, reloading, repacking and other processes that are required to maintain goods in good condition while they are transported through that non-party.

China Customs may request relevant documents to confirm the goods meet the respective rules of origin. This evidence could include commercial documents, such as the commercial invoice and a through bill of lading.

Exporters who are unable to provide relevant documents should aim to ensure that the seal of the container is intact, and the seal numbers and container numbers match the information on associated commercial documents, such as the bill of lading and certificate of origin.

Fact sheets

Relevant information on the NZCFTA including a tariff finder and information on doing business in China can be found on the MFAT website.

New Zealand Customs Notices

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

New Zealand–Hong Kong, China Closer Economic Partnership Agreement

The New Zealand–Hong Kong, China Closer Economic Partnership Agreement (NZ–HKC CEP) was signed in Hong Kong on 29 March 2010 and entered into force on 1 January 2011. The Agreement allows for originating goods exported from Hong Kong, China to gain preferential tariff treatment upon importation into New Zealand. Currently, all goods imported into Hong Kong, China, regardless of origin, are duty-free. The agreement ensures that in the future New Zealand goods imported into Hong Kong, China will remain duty-free.

For more information on the NZ–HKC CEP and the rules of origin, see Fact Sheet 45 (PDF 196 KB). Further information, including a tariff finder, can be found on the MFAT website.

Claiming Preference in Hong Kong

Hong Kong, China may request claims for preference to be evidenced by a declaration about the origin of the good.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

For most goods, there is no requirement for goods which are the origin of New Zealand under this agreement to be accompanied by a certificate of origin issued by a certification body.

However, goods classified under Chapters 61 and 62 of the HS code (apparel goods) have different requirements. The exporter/producer is required to obtain a certificate of origin from the Trade and Industry Department of Hong Kong, China or a Government Approved Certification Organisation of Hong Kong, China.

Product Specific Rules

New Zealand Customs Notices

Rules of Origin Provisions

New Zealand–Korea Free Trade Agreement

The New Zealand – Republic of Korea Free Trade Agreement (KNZFTA) was signed in Seoul on 23 March 2015 and entered into force in December 2015.

Further information on the Rules of Origin is available on Fact Sheet 49 (PDF 200 KB). Additional information can also be found on the MFAT website.

Claiming Preference under KNZFTA

Under KNZFTA a claim that goods are eligible for preferential tariff treatment is based on a written or electronic declaration of origin completed by the exporter or producer and needs to be in the importer’s possession when the claim for preferential access is made.

The importer can choose which form of documentary evidence of origin it seeks from the exporter or producer, as either form is acceptable to the importing Customs authority providing it contains all the necessary data elements.

Product Specific Rules

New Zealand–Malaysia Free Trade Agreement

The New Zealand–Malaysia Free Trade Agreement (MNZFTA) was signed in Kuala Lumpur on 26 October 2009 and entered into force on 1 August 2010. Malaysia is also a Party to the ASEAN-Australia New Zealand Free Trade Area Agreement (AANZFTA). Traders should consider which agreement provides the most benefit for their imported/exported products.

Further information on the Rules of Origin for the MNZFTA is set out in Fact Sheet 44 (PDF 206 KB). Additional information on the MNZFTA is also available on the MFAT website.

Claiming Preference in Malaysia

Unlike AANZFTA, goods exported from New Zealand to Malaysia under the MNZFTA do not require a certificate of origin from a New Zealand certification body. A claim that goods are eligible for preferential tariff treatment must be supported by an exporter or producer declaration (further information is set out in Fact Sheet 44).

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

New Zealand–Singapore Closer Economic Partnership

The Agreement between New Zealand and Singapore on a Closer Economic Partnership (ANZSCEP) entered into force on 1 January 2001. Under ANZSCEP, all goods imported into Singapore are duty-free, with the exception of some alcohol.

Singapore is also Party to the ASEAN-Australia New Zealand Free Trade Area Agreement, and the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (P4.). Traders should consider which agreement provides the most benefit for their imported/exported products.

For information on the rules of origin and using the agreement, see Fact Sheet 19 (PDF 216 KB).

Claiming Preference in Singapore

Most goods imported into Singapore are already duty-free, therefore a certificate of origin is not needed for New Zealand originating goods (except certain alcohol).

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

New Zealand–Thailand Closer Economic Partnership Agreement

The New Zealand–Thailand Closer Economic Partnership Agreement came into force on 1 July 2005. The Thailand CEP is designed to improve the business environment between New Zealand and Thailand, reduce the cost of doing business, and promote cooperation between Customs administrations.

Thailand is also a Party to the AANZFTA Agreement. Traders should consider which agreement is most suitable to their imported/exported products.

For information on the Rules of Origin and using this agreement, see Fact Sheet 30 – Thailand Closer Economic Partnership Agreement (PDF 249 KB). Further information on the Thailand CEP is also available on the MFAT website.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

Claiming Preference in Thailand

Unlike AANZFTA, goods exported from New Zealand to Thailand under the Thailand CEP do not require a certificate of origin from a New Zealand certification body. A claim that goods are eligible for preferential tariff treatment must be supported by an exporter or producer declaration (further information is set out in Fact Sheet 30 (PDF 249 KB).

South Pacific Regional Trade and Economic Co-operation Agreement (SPARTECA)

The South Pacific Regional Trade and Economic Co-operation Agreement (SPARTECA) is a non-reciprocal trade agreement in which New Zealand (together with Australia) offers preferential tariff treatment for specified products that are the produce or manufacture of the Pacific Islands Forum countries (known as the ‘Forum Island Countries’). There is no preferential duty rate for New Zealand goods exported to a Forum Island Country.

The Forum Island Countries are the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu. Forum Island Countries duty rates are identified under the abbreviation ‘Pac’ (not FIC) in The Working Tariff Document of New Zealand.

For more information on the Rules of Origin and the agreement, see Fact Sheet 8 (PDF 671 KB).

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership

The Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (P4) is an agreement between Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Singapore, and New Zealand. The P4 agreement, which stands for “Pacific 4”, came into force in 2006. Under P4, most tariffs on goods traded between member countries were removed immediately, with remaining tariffs to be phased out (by 2015 for Brunei Darussalam and 2017 for Chile).

Information on the rules of origin is available in Fact Sheet 31 (PDF 231 KB). Additional information on the P4 Agreement is also available on the MFAT website.

Claiming Preference in P4 Country

The exporter or producer of a good must complete either the declaration of origin or a certificate of origin, either of which may be used by the importer to evidence the origin of the good.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules

Further trade agreements

Agreement between New Zealand and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu on Economic Cooperation

The Agreement between New Zealand and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu on Economic Cooperation (ANZTEC) came into force on 1 December 2013. The Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu is also known as ‘Chinese Taipei’. 

On entry into force, 70% of tariff lines for goods entering Chinese Taipei will be free of duty. Duty on the remaining lines will decrease over a 12-year period. Information on the rules of origin for imports from Chinese Taipei and exports to Chinese Taipei is set out in Fact Sheet 48 (PDF 241 KB).

Further information on the Agreement, including a tariff finder and information on doing business in Chinese Taipei, is available on the New Zealand Commerce and Industry Office for Chinese Taipei website. The website provides links to the following ANZTEC and JG provisions, which have been incorporated into New Zealand law:

  • Rules of Origin (Chapter 3)
  • Implementing Arrangement on Rules of Origin Operational Procedures
  • Product Specific Rules Schedule
  • Tariff Schedule (NZ).

Claiming preference in Chinese Taipei

ANZTEC does not require a third party issued certificate of origin – the exporter can self-declare that the good is an originating good. An example declaration and certificate can be found here.

Claiming Preference in New Zealand

A New Zealand importer may make a claim for preferential tariff treatment on the basis of a certificate of origin, a declaration of origin, or other evidence sufficient to prove that the goods satisfy the relevant rules of origin provisions. If requested by Customs, an importer claiming preference must be able to provide sufficient evidence to substantiate the claim.

Rules of Origin Provisions

Product Specific Rules