Trade Minister Tim Groser proclaimed, yesterday, that New Zealand and Russia, with with its Customs Union partners of Belarus and Kazakhstan, will initiate the FTA negotiations.
"Russia has agreed to proceed towards a formal trade agreement with New Zealand, subject to a satisfactory outcome of scoping discussions," he said.
The NZ International Business Forum has opined that these negotiations are a part of New Zealand's innovative trade policy.
He added that New Zealand’s economic ties with Russia and its partners are quite immature currently. The FTA will help in improving trade and investment.
The country has been in negotiations with Korea, India and eight members of the extended Trans Pacific Partnership.
Export New Zealand Executive Director Catherine Beard stated that FTA will enhance the opportunities for growing New Zealand's international trade.
She further said that New Zealand will prove to be a robust first-mover advantage in a couple of markets if it manages to initiate the FTA ahead of all.
Talking about the future, she said, Russia may prove to be a credible partner for developing Kiwi agri-tech businesses and our service sector.
Wellington Regional Chamber of Commerce also opined that FTA will boost the growth in the service sector.