A free trade agreement with the Pacific Alliance will benefit Māori businesses while protecting their rights.

Treaty of Waitangi

As in all of New Zealand’s recent free trade agreements (FTAs), our agreement with the Pacific Alliance will contain a Treaty of Waitangi clause that protects the New Zealand Government’s ability to adopt any policy it considers necessary to fulfil its obligations to Māori. This is non-negotiable.

Māori exporters and businesses

The Government’s progressive and inclusive Trade for All agenda wants trade agreements that promote and protect indigenous peoples’ interests. A free trade agreement with the Pacific Alliance will increase opportunities and reduce barriers for Māori businesses in the region.

Read more: Trade for All agenda

Indigenous cooperation

There is already a large amount of activity between New Zealand Māori and indigenous communities in Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru, and there is scope to deepen these connections in areas of mutual interest. New Zealand has put forward a framework for advancing indigenous cooperation between New Zealand and the Pacific Alliance under the FTA.

Traditional knowledge

New Zealand is committed to achieving provisions that safeguard our right to protect genetic resources, traditional knowledge, and folklore.

Engagement with Māori

We have been engaging with Māori throughout the negotiation process to ensure that Māori interests are promoted and protected.

An economic consultancy, BERL, was also commissioned to investigate Māori export capability and interests using desktop research, supported by qualitative phone interviews with a range of Māori enterprises and representative groups.

Read the report here: Māori Exports, current and potential trade with Pacific Alliance countries [PDF, 1 MB].

Read more about how the Government consults Maori during free trade agreement negotiations.


If you have any questions about upcoming Māori consultation or Māori interests in relation to New Zealand trade policy, you can contact us at maori@mfat.govt.nz.