Government moves to support Kiwi businesses trading with Iran as its relationship with US worsens

Source: 1News

The Government is doing everything it can to support Kiwi businesses trading with Iran, the PM said today, as friction between Iran and US delves deeper into a tit-for-tat relationship. 

New Zealand benefits from predictability and the world order, she told reporters from New York today, when asked if she could give an assurance Kiwi trade with Iran would not be impacted. 

"We benefit from the rule book and the international world order. We will keep promoting a move away from any tit-for-tat trade wars, anything that removes that predictability that we rely on so heavily.

In May, US President Trump said he would pull out of a 2015 agreement over Iran's nuclear programme and would re-impose sanctions on Tehran, according to the Associated Press. 

Overnight, Mr Trump asked the UN General Assembly "to isolate Iran's regime as long as its aggression continues". Iran's President Hassan Rouhani later that day spoke of leaders stirring up "extremist nationalism and racism... though xenophobic tendencies resembling a Nazi disposition". 

When asked if she found the verbal attacks frightening, Ms Ardern said "from New Zealand's perspective we benefit from predictability".

"It's a big focus for us to protect New Zealand’s interests, and we do that by supporting the rule book by operating under the predictable international order that New Zealand’s always supported, we’ll keep pushing for that.

"We always work hard to ensure that we're supporting our exporters. We've worked hard on aluminium and steel and we will continue to focus on issues like our exporters in Iran."

New Zealand was still subject to steel tariffs by the US, which was intended to impact China. The Trump Administration did not include New Zealand in the countries exempt from the tariffs.