New Zealand, Thailand to build strategic partnership

International |  IANS  | Published :

Wellington, April 17 (IANS) New Zealand and Thailand will upgrade their bilateral relationship to a strategic partnership by 2026, the Prime Ministers of the two countries said on Wednesday.

"New Zealand and Thailand have a lot to offer each other. We have a strong mutual desire to build on our long-standing and warm relationship," New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon said after meeting with his Thai counterpart, Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, in Bangkok as quoted by Xinhua news agency report.

The elevating of the bilateral relationship to a strategic partnership is also to mark 70 years of diplomatic relations in 2026, a New Zealand government statement cited Luxon as saying.

The Prime Ministers discussed opportunities to strengthen the relationship across defence and security, education, and people-to-people links, the statement said.

Economic cooperation was another key focus of the meeting, including setting a shared goal to triple two-way trade by 2045, it said, adding that Thailand is a consistent top 10 two-way trade partner for New Zealand.

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