Tricky time for Ardern for trade talks in Europe

In the UK Brexit is in disarray, and this mess will cause difficulties working out future trade alliances there and in Europe. But all this up in the air Jacinda Ardern is going to try.

RNZ: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern heading to Europe with a focus on trade

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern heads to London this weekend where she’s expected to meet with British Prime Minister Theresa May in the wake of her surviving a no-confidence vote.

While there Ms Ardern will push for certainty that New Zealand will be left no worse off in respect of trade following the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union (EU).

I doubt that trade with New Zealand will be much of a priority for May or for the UK right now. They don’t know what they are doing for themselves let alone what they might be able to do with countries on the other side of the world.

She will then head to the World Economic Forum in Switzerland, along with the Finance Minister Grant Robertson, where the focus will be progressing a free trade agreement with Europe.

The prime minister will then head to Brussels for high-level meetings.

“My visit to the UK is an opportunity to underline New Zealand’s position as a natural and long-standing partner for the country as it redefines its global role post-Brexit,” Ms Ardern said.

What ‘post-Brexit’ will look like is anyone’s guess right now.

“I will be using my engagements to enhance New Zealand’s profile as a likeminded partner to the EU across a wide range of issues, including climate change, social policy, trade and our commitment to the rules-based system,” she said.

“There is still much progress to make in trade talks with our European partners, so a key focus of this whole trip is to speak to European Commission and individual country leaders to shore up support for our ongoing negotiations and ensure New Zealand exporters achieve a great deal.”

Ardern is probably on the mark saying “There is still much progress to make in trade talks with our European partners”.

She has too make the most of her trip to London and Europe, but it is going to be difficult making much progress on trade deals.

Unless Ardern can sort out Brexit for May and the EU while she is there.

17 Comments

  1. David

     /  January 18, 2019

    If I was her I would just go hang out at Davos with the billionaire luvvies which would be a cool experience and some potentially great Instagram moments.
    Going to Britain is a waste of time as is visiting Europe she might have been better to wait a couple of months, weather would be better and she could take Gayford and bubs and get a bit of sightseeing in.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  January 18, 2019

      Or a bit of being seen in ?

      I hope that she doesn’t prance around telling everyone to be kind and caring and go for well-being, making a complete fool of herself.

      • Gezza

         /  January 18, 2019

        I don’t think she made a fool of herself Kitty. It’s not a bad aspiration to have if it’s allied with putting in place policies that help or enable more people at the arse end of society to become more self-sufficient and community minded. That won’t happen overnight. The worst she would have done is be dismissed by right-wingers & political hard-noses as a dreamer.

        I’m quite keen to see how they propose to define, measure & report on NZ’s wellbeing. I think more than the simple OECD indicators could be a good thing. I just hope it doesn’t end up being somethong so warm & fluffy or bureaucratically woolly-headed that it’s of no use at all in assisting governments with pokicy settings.

        I don’t expect too much from Labour here, must admit, their rather sorry crop of Inexperienced or dorky Ministers hasn’t impressed me – but I expect nothing at all in this area from National.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  January 18, 2019

          It’s a good aspiration, but as no government there will have a policy of being unkind and promoting harm, it will sound very immature. I suspect that there won’t be much substance and will make the NZ PM look like a fluffette.

  2. artcroft

     /  January 18, 2019

    Ardern will get 10 mins with May face to face, then she’ll be shunted off to meet with a range of under-secretaries for nibbles and a cup of tea, and that’ll be it.

    • David

       /  January 18, 2019

      I would imagine the BBC and the Guardian will want to do features on her so that is good for our tourism industry. She should take some of our exporters with her and see if she can help.

  3. adamsmith1922

     /  January 18, 2019

    at least she she is not here

    • David

       /  January 18, 2019

      She hasnt been for the last 4 weeks which is just bizarre, whoever heard of a country where the leader goes awol for a month then goes overseas for a few weeks.

      • Blazer

         /  January 18, 2019

        hey ..it could be worse..at least she doesn’t play…golf!

      • Gezza

         /  January 18, 2019

        Yeah but country hasn’t gone to hell in a handbasket duringbthis time, has it? That suggests things in NZ can hum along nicely without polllies stuffing things up over the holidays – i.e. overall, there’s good governance in NZ.

        Look around – at the US, the UK, other countries. We’ve got it good. Everything almost works better without the blighters back in Welly, sucking up our air and all the nation’s print-media & air-time.

  4. thespectrum

     /  January 18, 2019

    Leaders and Gov’t reps have schedules to meet and
    greet like any business.
    There is nothing tricky as everything is choreographed.
    All the real business is done by the specialist negotiators.
    The leaders just smile at the photo sessions.
    Business as usual.
    So far so good for Cinderella.
    Gotta watch out for the jealous ugly sisters in the National party .
    You gotta admit JCinda she is a sweetie.
    And she has a Prancom Hince the one and only Superman Clarke (Kent) Gayble.
    Of course Neve the Prime miniature is delightful.
    Our wonderful nuclear free family.
    I am sure I speak on behalf of all Kiwis when I say
    God save Princess Jacinda our beautiful first lady.
    I am all teary now.

  5. artcroft

     /  January 18, 2019

    “There is nothing tricky as everything is choreographed.”
    Bar missing appointments with journalists because of “diary issues”.

  6. Zedd

     /  January 18, 2019

    once the ‘Brexit debacle’ is resolved ?
    then things may become clearer ??

    “Lets do this…” 😀