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New Zealand PM to meet Modi: NSG, trade talks on the table

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key, who is on a second state visit to India in five years, will hold a one-to-one meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss growing bilateral relations on Wednesday.

india Updated: Oct 26, 2016 11:04 IST
Jayanth Jacob
New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key shakes hands with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi during his ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan presidential palace in New Delhi on Wednesday.
New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key shakes hands with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi during his ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan presidential palace in New Delhi on Wednesday.(REUTERS)

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key, who is on a second state visit to India in five years, will hold a one-to-one meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss growing bilateral relations on Wednesday.

Key last visited India in 2011. The last Indian PM to visit New Zealand was Rajiv Gandhi in 1986. President Pranab Mukherjee visited New Zealand early this year.

Here is what you need to know about India-New Zealand ties and issues that the two sides will discuss:

1. Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)

New Zealand is a member of the NSG, an elite club of 48 countries that deal in the trade of nuclear technology and fissile materials. New Zealand’s view is that there should be proper procedures laid out before the NSG adds new members. India needs to win over countries other than China such as New Zealand, Ireland, Austria, Brazil and South Africa to back its case to be a member of the NSG. India would seek New Zealand’s support for its NSG bid during Key’s visit.

2. Trade and investment

The total bilateral trade (both in goods and services) amounted to $1.45 billion. The two countries are engaged in the negotiations of two pacts to further trade and investment. A Free Trade Agreement discussions were launched in 2010 and it is going on. India, New Zealand and other 14 countries are also negotiating a regional trade pact known as Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

Around 83% of New Zealand’s electricity production comes from renewable sources which is expected to go up by 90% by 2025. Renewable energy is one area where India is looking for new partnerships. ONGC has bagged a contract for hydrocarbon exploration contract along the Taranaki coast in New Zealand’s North Island in 2014.

3. Students/migration/Indian origin people

Four percent of New Zealand’s population is Indian origin. The Indian diaspora is estimated to be 1.75 lakh. There are 29,000 Indian students who study in the country. Their number was 4,600 in 2008. India is also the largest source of skilled migration to New Zealand.