Secretary Clinton's Visit to New Zealand
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s visit to New Zealand on November 4-5 reflects the value the United States places on our bilateral relationship, which encompasses broad political, economic, scientific, and security cooperation. The United States and New Zealand are global partners who share common values, interests and concerns. We collaborate bilaterally and through a variety of international and regional organizations to promote peace, security, and prosperity.
- Revitalizing the U.S.-New Zealand relationship: Secretary Clinton will meet with the senior leadership of New Zealand, including Prime Minister John Key, Foreign Minister Murray McCully, and Leader of the Opposition Phil Goff. They will issue a Wellington Declaration that reaffirms our close historical ties and recommits us to a relationship that is vibrant and strong across a wide range of activities. They will also pledge to deepen regional cooperation and regularize high level meetings, creating a strategic partnership for the 21st century.
- Affirming our global commitment to peacekeeping: The United States and New Zealand stand shoulder-to-shoulder in Afghanistan, as we have in many other armed conflicts throughout history. Secretary Clinton’s visit to the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior will honor those soldiers who have given their lives defending freedom.
- Commitment to the environment: Secretary Clinton will visit the U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) to underscore 50 years of United States-New Zealand joint scientific cooperation. Christchurch serves as the USAP’s gateway city for operations at McMurdo Station and the South Pole Base.
- Highlighting our trade relationship: The United States and New Zealand are close economic partners, and we are committed to deepening that cooperation as we continue Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. The United States and New Zealand are already close trading and investment partners. Our top exports to New Zealand are aircraft parts, agriculture equipment, and medical equipment, with two-way trade equaling $5.2 billion in 2009. As of June 2009, New Zealand's total imports from the United States amounted to 10.1% (3 billion dollars) of total New Zealand imports. The U.S. Export and Business reception, hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand will spotlight New Zealand’s vibrant U.S. business community and our two countries’ strong economic relationship.
- Support for Canterbury: In Christchurch, Secretary Clinton will participate in a town hall meeting where she will reach out to the city’s residents who recently suffered a 7.1 magnitude earthquake that caused widespread damage throughout the region. She will reiterate the readiness of the United States to assist and will highlight the strong spirit of the people of Christchurch.
- Partners in the Pacific on Transnational Issues: The United States and New Zealand are partnering in the Pacific region to combat transnational crime and support sustainable development. The U.S. Department of State is working with New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Police, and Customs to disrupt and dismantle transnational criminal threats across the Pacific, particularly illicit transnational networks. New Zealand and the United States will co-host a symposium focused on these issues November 16-18 in Christchurch. Additionally, the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI), on behalf of the United States Government, will collaborate with the New Zealand Government to co-host a policy dialogue aimed at increasing the political participation of Pacific Island women through increased economic opportunities and empowerment.