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World > Oceania > New Zealand > Relations with U.S. (Notes)

New Zealand - Relations with U.S. (Notes)


U.S.-NEW ZEALAND RELATIONS
Bilateral relations are excellent. The United States and New Zealand share common elements of history and culture and a commitment to democratic principles. Senior-level officials regularly consult with each on issues of mutual importance. In March 2007, Prime Minister Clark visited Washington, DC, where she met with President George W. Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.

The United States established consular representation in New Zealand in 1839 to represent and protect American shipping and whaling interests. Since the U.K. was responsible for New Zealand's foreign affairs, direct U.S.-New Zealand diplomatic ties were not established until 1942, when the Japanese threat encouraged close U.S.-New Zealand cooperation in the Pacific campaign. During the war, more than 400,000 American military personnel were stationed in New Zealand to prepare for crucial battles such as Tarawa and Guadalcanal.

New Zealand's relationship with the United States in the post-World War II period was closely associated with the Australian, New Zealand, United States (ANZUS) security treaty of 1951, under which signatories agreed to consult in case of an attack in the Pacific and to 'act to meet the common danger.' During the postwar period, access to New Zealand ports by U.S. vessels contributed to the flexibility and effectiveness of U.S. naval forces in the Pacific.

Growing concern about nuclear testing in the South Pacific and arms control issues contributed to the 1984 election of a Labour government committed to barring nuclear-armed and nuclear-powered warships from New Zealand ports. The government's anti-nuclear policy proved incompatible with long-standing, worldwide U.S. policy of neither confirming nor denying the presence or absence of nuclear weapons onboard U.S. vessels.

Implementation of New Zealand's policy effectively prevented practical alliance cooperation under ANZUS, and after extensive efforts to resolve the issue proved unsuccessful, in August 1986 the United States suspended its ANZUS security obligations to New Zealand. Even after President George H.W. Bush's 1991 announcement that U.S. surface ships do not normally carry nuclear weapons, New Zealand's legislation prohibiting visits of nuclear-powered ships continues to preclude a bilateral security alliance with the U.S. The legislation enjoys broad public and political support in New Zealand. The United States would welcome New Zealand's reassessment of its legislation to permit that country's return to full ANZUS cooperation.

Despite suspension of U.S. security obligations, the New Zealand Government has reaffirmed the importance it attaches to continued close political, economic, and social ties with the United States and Australia. New Zealand is an active member of the global coalition in the War against Terrorism, and deployed SAS troops to Afghanistan, and naval and air assets to the Persian Gulf.

The United States is New Zealand's second-largest trading partner after Australia. In June 2006, total bilateral trade was U.S. $6.7 billion. New Zealand exported U.S. $3.2 billion to the United--with a U.S. $311 million trading deficit for New Zealand--and U.S. merchandise exports to New Zealand were U.S. $3.4 billion. U.S. direct foreign investment in New Zealand in 2003 totaled $3.8 billion, largely concentrated in finance, wholesale, telecommunications services and manufacturing sectors. New Zealand has worked closely with the U.S. to promote free trade in the WTO, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) group, and other multilateral fora.

The U.S. and New Zealand work together closely on scientific research in the Antarctic. Christchurch is the staging area for joint logistical support operations serving U.S. permanent bases at McMurdo Station and South Pole, and New Zealand's Scott base, (located just three kilometers from McMurdo Station in the Ross Sea region).

Principal U.S. Embassy Officials
Ambassador--William P. McCormick
Deputy Chief of Mission--David J. Keegan
Public Affairs Counselor--Roy A. Glover
Political and Economic Counselor--Katherine B. Hadda
Agricultural Attache--Laura Scandurra
Defense Attache--Capt. R. Martinez, USN
Management Officer--Ronna S. Pazdral
Consular Affairs (Auckland)--Richard Adams
Senior Commercial Officer (Sydney)--Keith Kirkham

The U.S. Embassy in New Zealand is located at 29 Fitzherbert Terrace, Thorndon, Wellington (tel. 64-4-472-2068, fax 64-4-471-2380). The Embassy website is http://wellington.usembassy.gov/. The U.S. Consulate General is located on the 3rd Floor, Citibank Building, 23 Customs Street East, Auckland (tel. 64-9-303-2724, fax 64-9-366-0870).


Facts at a Glance: Geography - People - Government - Economy - Communications - Transportation - Military - Climate - Current Time - Ranking Positions - New Zealand Dollar Exchange Rates
Notes and Commentary: People - Economy - Government and Political Conditions - Historical Highlights - Foreign Relations - Relations with U.S.



Facts at a Glance
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Climate
Current Time
Ranking Positions
New Zealand Dollar Exchange Rates


Notes and Commentary
People
Economy
Government and Political Conditions
Historical Highlights
Foreign Relations
Relations with U.S.





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