15 Mar 2018

Peters unclear on pursuing Russia-NZ free trade agreement

From Morning Report, 8:10 am on 15 March 2018

Foreign Minister Winston Peters has hit back at the National Party after it called him an apologist for Russia. National's trade spokesperson Todd McClay has been critical of Mr Peters' enthusiastic support for a free trade deal with Moscow. But Mr Peters says the government seeks fair and free trade with any country it can. He made the comments before the poisoning in Salisbury and since then the government has added its voice to the widespread international condemnation over the attack. RNZ political reporter Benedict Collins spoke to Mr Peters during his visit to the Chatham Islands. He asked Mr Peters about his reaction to the Skripal poisoning and also to the National party's comments. In March 2014, John Key's government pulled then-Trade Minister Tim Groser out of the talks over Russia's meddling in the Ukraine.