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ARC's economic development unit taking shape

Media Release: Auckland Regional Council

27 May 2005

ARC's economic development unit taking shape

The role of a new regional economic development unit, to be set up by the Auckland Regional Council, was confirmed earlier this week, signalling the beginning of a new approach to economic development in the Auckland region.

The Auckland Regional Economic Development Unit will take on a key role in the implementation of the Auckland Regional Economic Development Strategy, which was developed to improve the quality of Auckland's economic performance.

Specific functions of the unit, which will be a business unit of the ARC, will include: ·Acting as a single facilitation or contact point for the region ·Attracting quality investment to the region ·Building regional collaboration to deliver major regional projects

ARC Chairman Michael Lee says that the establishment of the unit signals the start of a new era for economic development in the Auckland region, and a new focus for the ARC.

"This is an important milestone for the ARC and the Auckland region. The establishment of the new unit, and the new regional forum which will also be up and running in another month or so, will help ensure that the region's economic strategy sits alongside other regional strategies aimed at ensuring that the overall quality of life in Auckland is both maintained and enhanced.

"This new unit will provide a truly regional focus that will add value to local and national initiatives, at the same time ensuring co-ordination and co-operation within the region itself.

"Having one unit that will essentially act as a 'one-stop-shop', and as a key contact point for those looking to invest in our region can only benefit the region in the long term, and will make it easier for investors to learn more about what the region has to offer. The new unit will also be tasked with making sure the needs of current businesses are being met. I am certain that this unit will add value from the start."

The unit will be up and running from 1 July.

Leadership, energy and expertise for the new unit will be provided by an independent advisory board. The advisory board will include four or five members, who will be appointed by 1 July. The unit will liaise regularly with the Regional Economic Development Forum, which has been established as a committee of the ARC to oversee the implementation of the Auckland Regional Economic Development Strategy.

ends

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