The Right Honorable John Key, Mr. Karl Ye,
Distinguished Guests and dear friends from GMP Pharmaceuticals,
Ladies and gentlemen:
It's my great pleasure to join you in the opening of this new dairy plant by GMP Pharmaceuticals. At this joyous occasion, on behalf of the Chinese Consulate-General in Auckland, I would like to convey our warmest congratulations and best wishes.
This dairy plant is put into production at just the right time, especially as most of its products will be exported to China. Thanks to the historic Free Trade Agreement between our two countries signed in 2008, the tariff on diary products imported into China from New Zealand will gradually be reduced to zero. Starting from this year, infant formula milk powder and yogurt become "early adopters".
As it is well known, New Zealand is the world's largest dairy exporter and accounts for about one-third of cross-border trade in dairy products. And China, with over 16 million babies being born last year, is already the world's largest infant formula market and is anticipated to replace the US as the world's largest dairy market by 2020 or so.
In fact, the booming dairy trade is just an epitome of fast-growing China-New Zealand trade ties. Last year, bilateral trade volume between our two countries reached over 8.7 billion U.S. dollars, 2.3 times the volume when FTA signed in 2008.
China's development offers New Zealand enterprises great potential and we believe that there are boundless opportunities in the future. Our Consulate-General in Auckland, will make unremitting efforts to help build up initiatives, provide advisory and other services to serve as bridges between entrepreneurs of the two countries.
Once again, congratulations to the opening of this new factory by GMP Pharmaceuticals. Wish all friends here the very best and all success in the future. Thank you!