www.mfat.govt.nz www.safetravel.govt.nz
New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade.
.AfricaAsia NorthAsia South and SoutheastBangladeshBruneiCambodiaIndiaIndonesiaLaosMalaysiaMaldivesMyanmarNepalPakistanPhilippinesSingaporeSri LankaThailandTimor LesteViet NamAustraliaEuropeLatin AmericaNorth AmericaPacific

Related links in New Zealand

Links to India

Other governments' information papers

NZ Inc India strategy

NZ Inc India strategy launch photo galleryNZ Inc India strategy launch Photo Gallery

Country/territory locator

Enter the country or territory for the information paper you want. (We do not have information papers on all countries.)

World map. Africa Europe Middle East North Asia South/South East Asia Australia Pacific Latin America North America/Caribbean


flag of the Republic of India

Republic of India


India and New Zealand have a longstanding and warm relationship. India is a priority relationship for New Zealand and our most developed relationship in South Asia.

India’s importance to New Zealand is growing.  This reflects India’s expanding economy which has emerged strongly from the global recession, its growing geopolitical importance, and its increased openness to the rest of the world. Given this, the New Zealand Government is implementing an inter-agency NZ Inc India strategy that is working towards India being a core trade, economic and political partner for New Zealand by 2015.


Bilateral links

The NZ-Inc India Strategy

The NZ Inc India Strategy is the first of a series of all-of-government strategies aimed to set priorities and coordinate relations with key offshore partners. The Strategy articulates a clear vision that India should be a core trade, economic and political partner for New Zealand by 2015. The Strategy has six broad goals:

The NZ Inc India Strategy was launched by Prime Minister John Key on 20 October 2011 at The Cloud, Auckland. More information on the NZ Inc India Strategy is here, including NZ Inc’s ‘Opening Doors in India’ publication.

Trade and economic relationship

India is an increasingly important trading partner for New Zealand. Trade with India has nearly doubled over the past five years, growing from NZD 620 million in 2007 to NZD 1.1 billion in 2012.

New Zealand’s main exports to India are primary commodities. Although  exports have significantly grown over the past five years, high tariffs on items of interest to New Zealand, particularly agricultural and value-added products, continue to restrict our exports. However, in recent years India’s average applied tariff rate has reduced in line with its tariff policy and WTO commitments. 

There has been steady growth in our services trade with India, most notably in tourism and education. India is our second largest market for international students.  Opportunities for growth in other services sectors include professional and business services, environmental services, engineering and construction services, and services incidental to agriculture and forestry.

New Zealand is negotiating a free trade agremeement with India. The most recent round of negotiations was held in July 2013. You can read more about the FTA negotiations on the New Zealand-India FTA page.

The India-New Zealand Business Council is the preeminent New Zealand business group engaging with India. 

New Zealand Trade (year ended June 2013)


New Zealand’s 15th largest trading partner

NZ Exports

NZD 725.912 million (FOB)

Main exports

Confidential Items: $232.3 million
Wood, and Articles of Wood: $172.1 million
Optical and Medical Equipment: $136.2 million
Wool and Animal Hair: $30.3 million
Iron and Steel: $24.5 milion

NZ Imports

NZD 398.416 million (VFD)

Main imports

Pharmaceutical Products: $50.2 million
Precious Stones: $42.1 million
Textile Articles: $20.9 million
Vehicles (except Railway Vehicles) and Parts: $18.0 million
Apparel Articles and Accessories (not knitted): $16.7 million


India is New Zealand’s second largest market for international students. There were 11,349 international fee-paying students from India in New Zealand in 2012, up from 6,348 in 2008.

The New Zealand and Indian govenrments have formed the India-New Zealand Education Council (INZEC) to coordiante educational links between New Zealand and India. INZEC focusses on areas such as academic and student exchanges, joint research activities and industry collaborations.

The New Zealand India Research Institute is a consortium of scholars actively engaged in research on India in New Zealand universities.

Tourism and Air Links

In 2012, 29,856 people from India visited New Zealand, contributing an estimated NZD 90 million to the New Zealand economy.  Indian tourists tend to visit outside of New Zealand’s peak tourist season.

There are no direct air links between India and New Zealand. The majority of travellers transit through Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong or Dubai.  A bilateral Air Services Agreement was signed in 2006 (and updated in 2008), which provides for direct aircraft services to take place between Mumbai and Auckland. 

Political and cultural links

India and New Zealand’s historical ties stretch back to when Indian migration to New Zealand began in the 1890s. Most of these early migrants came from Punjab and Gujarat, but today New Zealand is home to people with origins from all over India. Today, well over 100,000 people of Indian descent call New Zealand home.

New Zealand and India share much in common. Our troops fought alongside each other during the Gallipoli campaign in 1915, which is an important part of New Zealand’s cultural identity. In addition, we share a Commonwealth heritage, legal system, business, language, democratic traditions, and personal links. We also have shared heroes: Mahatma Gandhi is an admired figure in New Zealand; and Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay’s legacy as Everest pioneers is also well known in India. And of course, we have a shared love of hockey, mountaineering, and cricket!


top of page

Regional and multilateral links

New Zealand and India are active members of the Asia-Pacific region. We have a common stake in the prosperity and stability of our region and work closely together in settings such as the East Asia Summit (EAS) and Asian Regional Forum (ARF) to advance our mutual interests.  India’s interest extends to the Pacific Island states and in 2003 it became a dialogue partner of the Pacific Islands Forum.

New Zealand and India also work constructively together as members of the United Nations (UN) and the Commonwealth. We are also both members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Asian Development Bank.

Our common membership of regional and multilateral forums provides a platform for regular dialogue on key issues such as the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases, international trade, United Nations reform, human rights, counter-terrorism and other transnational issues.

top of page


High-level visits from and to India, have cemented the bilateral relationship.

Recent visits to India include:

Recent visits from India include:

top of page




Travel advice

The Safetravel [external link] website provides a travel advisory for travellers to India.

top of page

Page last updated: Wednesday, 27 August 2014 13:12 NZST