Our relationship with the Czech Republic

We have a friendly relationship with the Czech Republic and 2013 marked the 20th anniversary of diplomatic relations. 

The Czech Republic and New Zealand enjoy a strong record of cooperation in multilateral areas. As small countries, we each work through international bodies to ensure our voices are heard. The Czech Republic and New Zealand served together on the United Nations Security Council in 1993-94.

We have a reciprocal working holiday scheme in place which enables 1,200 young Czech working holiday makers to travel to New Zealand each year.

There are strong links between our countries dating back generations and a small community of Czechs in New Zealand. Bohemians, Moravians and Slovaks first came to New Zealand in the 1860s. More recent migration followed in the late 1960s. More than 3,700 Czechs visit New Zealand each year. Approximately 100 New Zealanders are long-term residents in the Czech Republic.  A number of New Zealand soldiers who fell in World War II are also buried in Commonwealth War Graves in the Czech Republic.

A number of prominent Czechs have contributed to New Zealand’s cultural landscape including artist Gottfried Lindauer, whose portraits of Māori were exhibited in his birthplace, Pilsen, from March to May 2015 as a keynote event of Pilsen’s year as the ‘Europe Capital of Culture’. More recently Fred Turnovsky ONZ, OBE (1916-1994), a well-known, Prague-born, Wellington businessman was influential in the development of music and arts funding in New Zealand.

The Czech Australia and New Zealand Association (CANZA), based in Prague, is active and hosts many community and business events year round.

Trade Statistics

Year ending March 2019 statistics

Total trade

NZ$206 million


Exports to Czech Republic

NZ$34 million 

Top exports: Mechanical machinery and equipment, Food residues, wastes and fodder

Imports from Czech Republic

NZ$146 million

Top imports: Vehicles, parts and accessories 
GDP per capita US$22,973  

There is potential for growth in services trade in education and tourism, particularly as a number of Czech universities increasingly offer a range of courses and degrees in English. We already have some science and education links, most notably through Lincoln University.

Working Holiday Scheme

New Zealanders aged between 18 and 35 can apply for a 12-month working holiday visa for the Czech Republic.  

To apply, you can go to, or post your application to, the Consulate of the Czech Republic in Sydney. You can also go to Czech Republic embassies in Berlin, Brussels, and London.

For more information, go to the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in Sydney website (external link).


Recent official visits

New Zealand to the Czech Republic
  • April 2014: Special Envoy Jim Bolger visited to discuss New Zealand's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UNSC
  • October 2014: Auckland Mayor Len Brown visited and met with the Mayor of Prague, Tomas Hudecek
  • April 2013: Minister Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully visited to promote New Zealand's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UNSC
Czech Republic to New Zealand
  • 2010: Premysl Sobotka - President of the Senate of the Czech Republic, and a Senate Delegation visited
  • 2008: Senate Committee on Science, Culture, Human Rights and Petitions visited 

News & Events

Voting in the 2020 General Election


The 2020 General Election will be held in New Zealand on 17 October along with the End of Life Choice and Cannabis referendums. Overseas voting will be possible from Wednesday 30 September.

German International Parliamentary Scholarship


The German Bundestag has now included New Zealand in its International Parliamentary Scholarship (IPS). The IPS will fund a five-month stay of a young New Zealander in Berlin, including a three-month parliamentary internship, complemented by a study programme.