Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London, and has taken the opportunity to meet with various leaders in the European Union, including UK PM Theresa May whose country is attempting to leave the union.  

 Ardern says UK PM Theresa May supports a free trade agreement between Britain and NZ.

“Given our size, given our focus on FTA's that deliver environmental and social wellbeing, I think we are really well placed to enter into that negotiation as one of the first cabs off the rank.”

The acting PM says there are untold benefits from FTA with Britain and Europe.

“He tini ngā hua ka puta mai ki a ngāi tātou te iwi Māori i te mea he iwi hokohoko atu, hokohoko mai tātou mai rānō, nā reira kei te haere tonu taua āhuatanga - ēngari ki te ao whānui.”

Global unrest was another topic of discussion between the two female PM’s and Davis says working together is the only way forward.

“Ki te kore tātou ngā motu, ngā whenua pai e tū ake hei whakapēhi ki raro ērā āhuatanga kino, ka pūāwai ērā mea.”

Davis also says Ardern is making an outstanding impression on the international stage in relation to tackling climate change.

“Kua ūmere pai ai te minenga i tana kōrero atu mō te 'climate change' kei roto o Parī, kei roto o Wīwī, me te tini hoki o ngā tāngata e puta ana kia rongo ai i āna kōrero kia kitea a kanohi a ia.”

New Zealand’s future relationship with the Crown

Jacinda Ardern has publically stated that New Zealand will inevitably leave the Commonwealth like Australia.

However, acting Prime Minister Kelvin Davis says New Zealand still needs to maintain a link with the Crown, otherwise, it will have implications for the Treaty of Waitangi. Davis says such a move towards becoming a republic would need deep consideration.

“Kei te hiahia a ngāi Māori mā kia ū tonu ki te Tiriti, nā reira ko ōku whakaaro e pā ana ki tērā - kei hea te wāhi mō te Tiriti kei roto i ērā āhuatanga? ko tāku hiahia - kei mua rawa.”

The big question is: when will we cut our ties with Britain?

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