Spain, New Zealand expand bilateral working holiday program

Madrid, Jun 29 (EFE).- New Zealand and Spain announced Wednesday the expansion of the bilateral working holiday program from which some 2,000 young people a year will now be able to benefit.

The news of the agreement expansion, up from 200 annual visas, was published Wednesday by the New Zealand government after a meeting between Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Spain’s President Pedro Sánchez in Madrid on Tuesday.

The Working Holiday/Youth Mobility Scheme allows young Spaniards between the ages of 18 and 30 to stay in the Oceanian country for a year and study or work there for a maximum period of six months. New Zealanders visiting Spain will enjoy the same conditions.

“These schemes create opportunities for young New Zealanders to develop their skills and work experience while traveling and living in Spain,” Jacinda Ardern said in a statement, adding that the changes “reflect the strength of the relationship between Spain and New Zealand.”

The bilateral meeting between the leaders took place on the sidelines of the summit of NATO leaders, which is being held in the Spanish capital.

Ardern and Sánchez also launched a Global Values Partnership, that will “seek to strengthen democracy, sustainability, gender equality and the empowerment of women, the Rule of Law, Human Rights, with special emphasis on the full exercise of the same by members of indigenous peoples and vulnerable groups,” according to a Beehive statement.

They also adopted an Action Plan to strengthen cooperation in specific projects for the protection of seabirds, including the endangered Antipodean albatross, whose migratory patterns include areas in which both countries operate.

In addition, the pair agreed on the benefits of a future free trade agreement between the European Union and New Zealand and condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Ardern also plans to meet in Madrid with her counterparts from Australia, South Korea and Japan. EFE


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