Monday, 22 September 2008

Helens days are numbered- Goffs Da Man!

Hooton says this is all about Goff being New Zealander of the year - I say that the free trade deal means its all about Goff being a Prime Minister -

From Hooton

Earlier this year, I wrote a Sunday Star-Times column saying that if Trade Minister Phil Goff achieved free trade agreements with both China and the United States in 2008, he would automatically deserve to be New Zealander of the Year. I confess that my column benefitted from tip-offs from well-placed sources. But I stand by my praise of Goff following this evening’s news even while noting though that the US deal has not yet been completed.
The idea of a P4 (or P5)/US deal has been criticised by people on the Left, such as my regular RNZ National colleague Laila Harre, who have pointed out that the P4 is (was) an investment treaty, not a trade deal. They said if the US joined it, it would mean that US companies would have the right to invest in New Zealand and the other P4/P5 countries without offering us any improved access to its massive market. MFAT sources have confirmed tonight that that is not the case - the US has agreed to expand the P4/5 to include trade.
Now, it could be said that Trade Minister Phil Goff and his excellent staff themselves have had nothing to do with the development. It could be said that the apparent failure of the WTO’s Doha Development Round has encouraged the US to find some other deal, in order to send a signal to the EU, the Brazilians and the Indians that if they do not play at the WTO, the US will go play with others. It could also be said that it is unlikely the deal will be completed and ratified before the US elections and so therefore is something of a stunt by the outgoing Bush Administration, knowing that an Obama Administration or a Democratic-controlled Congress is unlikely to allow it to be completed and ratified.
But these are unworthy comments to make tonight. Goff has had a fantastic year as Trade Minister. Any New Zealand Trade Minister who makes so much progress with both China and the US in a single year deserves to go down in history as one of our greatest diplomatic figures


Just my opinion said...

And the P4 countries all have a better expenditure rate than NZ which is way out of kilter... I have suggested that NZ pays attention to their P4 comrades and learn.

Anonymous said...

Bad as I hate to admit it, Phil deserves a DB:)
BTW Ms Prawn, I really enjoy your posts, you're a great addition to Blog World.