Getting the best deal from international trade is vital for the New Zealand economy and the prosperity of all New Zealanders. The Government works to secure access to overseas markets for New Zealand businesses and to ensure that we get the best trading conditions possible.
As an exporter, you are in a position to benefit from the numerous preferential trade agreements and export schemes that New Zealand has negotiated internationally over the years, and which are designed to promote the export of our goods. Despite these agreements, businesses still experience difficulties or barriers to exporting their goods overseas. Government agencies may be able to reduce, resolve or even prevent some of these barriers from happening.
Red tape can push up costs.
Trade barriers can make it costly or difficult to export to a particular market. When they are created by government policies and regulations they are often referred to as non-tariff barriers (NTBs). Non-tariff barriers (NTBs) are rules, such as government policies and regulations that make it costly or difficult to export to a particular market. You might experience these as ‘red tape’, ‘roadblocks’ or ‘costs of doing business’.
The barriers can arise with any type of export from food to digital goods and services. For example:
Who to talk to about non-tariff barriers
If you’re a manufacturer, and you’re facing regulatory restrictions on your exports such as standards, rules in selling to foreign governments, or other restrictions blocking you from exporting, contact the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).
Email | email@example.com
If you export education services, including teaching international students in New Zealand or overseas and face trade barriers such as licensing requirements, investment and foreign ownership restrictions or qualifications recognition contact, Education New Zealand for help.
If you are a service provider or investor and encounter trade barriers such as foreign equity caps, data storage requirements or procurement rules that are unfairly preventing you from exporting your services offshore, get in touch with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) for assistance.
If you are facing barriers for your food and primary sector exports the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) can help deal with barriers for food safety and standards, or animal welfare.
For additional information on barriers to trade; for trade barriers not covered above; or you are unsure where to register your issue, the below site can help. Inquiries registered will be directed to the agency best able to assist.
Customs can help with advice on a range of export issues including border clearance issues, tariff classification, and rules of origin. Contact New Zealand Customs:
Email | firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are some links to key information on international agreements and Customs’ role in the export sector. On these pages, you’ll access all the information, guidance and documentation you will need in your important role as a New Zealand exporter.
Preparing to export (external link) — If you are intending to export goods out of New Zealand, there are specific processes, documentation and clearance that are required. Find out what you need to know for successfully exporting your goods at Preparing to export.
Clear your exports (external link) — Are you intending to export commercial goods in your luggage? Learn the rules for the goods take out of the country but intend to bring back, such as product samples or prototypes.
Lodge your export entry (external link) — Find out how to get customs clearance for your exported goods along with schemes and initiatives that may benefit you as an exporter.
Export payments and refunds (external link) — Find out the payments you might expect when exporting goods out of New Zealand, and information on refunds.
Departing commercial ships (external link) — Find out what the documentation and clearance requirements are when leaving New Zealand.