New Zealanders reasonably expect that they will be informed about New Zealand’s trade policy agenda and have an opportunity to provide input into the Government’s approach. The Government works with a range of organisations, including key private sector groups, civil society and Māori, to develop robust positions on issues that are important to all. 

In May 2017, the Government established a Ministerial Advisory Group (MAG) as a mechanism for focused, high-level consultations across a wide range of sectors.


The role of the advisory group is to provide a further avenue for engagement between the Minister of Trade and representatives from business, Māori and civil society in order that:

  1. The Minister can update MAG members on developments across the trade agenda

  2. MAG members can provide feedback direct to the Minister on trade issues of importance to their sectors

  3. To help develop cross-sectoral perspectives on the trade agenda to inform Government strategies and priority setting for negotiations. 


The full list of the advisory group members and the organisations they represent is:

Aviation Industry Association

John Nicholson, CEO

Beef and Lamb

James Parsons, Chair

Business NZ

Kirk Hope, CEO

Council of Trade Unions

Sam Huggard, Secretary


Malcom Bailey, Chair

Export NZ

Catherine Beard, CEO

Federated Farmers

William Rolleston, President

Federation of Māori Authorities

Traci Houpapa, Chair

Horticulture NZ

Mike Chapman, CEO


Stephen Jacobi, Executive Director

Iwi Leaders Forum

Ngahiwi Tomoana, Chair (Ngāti Kahungunu)

Maori Tourism NZ

Pania Tyson-Nathan, Chair

Meat Industry Association

Tim Ritchie, CEO

New Zealand Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics

Charles Finny, Chair

NZ Tech

Graeme Muller, CEO

NZ Winegrowers

Phillip Gregan, CEO


Rachael Le Mesurier, Executive Director

Pipfruit NZ

Nadine Tunley, Chair

Seafood NZ

Tim Pankhurst, CEO

Tourism Industry Association

Chris Roberts, CEO

Universities New Zealand

Prof. Stuart McCutcheon, Chair

Wood Council of New Zealand

Brian Stanley, Chair


Dr Morgan Williams

Frequently asked questions

How was membership of the group decided? 

The composition of the group was determined on a mix of both personal and representative attributes. It was intended for the group to contain representatives of key export sectors, business, Māori interests and NGOs with an interest in trade, in order to reflect the overall priorities of New Zealand’s trade agenda and key national interests. All appointees should have leadership skills to make a constructive contribution to the discussions and to work effectively across sectors.

What does the group discuss?

A specific agenda is set at the time of each meeting. It could focus on a specific negotiation, or cover broader cross-cutting issues affecting the trade agenda. The aim is for the group to have an interactive discussion, so that the Government can update group members, and members have a chance to provide their views direct to the Minister. The group is also an opportunity for the various sectors represented to hear each other’s views.

What if my particular interests are not represented?  

The group is just one of many opportunities for New Zealanders to provide their views on trade. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Minister will continue with an active programme of outreach and engagement on trade issues. If you have a specific enquiry or want to make a submission to the government, please contact MFAT.