Trade delegation visits lead to new export sales
1 December 2006
Trade delegation visits to Pacific lead to over $20 million in new export sales
Three Manukau-led trade delegations to Pacific nations over the past 18 months have proved very successful and led to an increase in trade valued at $20 – $25 million.
The figure has been released by the New Zealand Pacific Business Council.
Trade delegations have visited the Cook Islands, Samoa and French Polynesia. The first two visits were organised by Manukau City Council, and the most recent, to Tahiti, was organised in partnership with the NZ Pacific Business Council.
The businesses represented covered a wide spectrum including trailer, pipe and aluminium manufacturers, food and engineering companies, and educational providers. Most are based in Manukau but some are from the wider Auckland region, and there was also representation from Waikato and Christchurch.
Sir Barry is delighted with the quick outcome. “For a small investment cost we’ve got a great result but it’s only the beginning. There is huge scope for New Zealand companies in the Pacific.
“The opportunities have always been there but it is important to develop contacts personally and show your face. We have quality products and New Zealand companies have a good reputation, so we begin with an advantage.
“The figure of $20 to $25 million in new trade is probably an underestimate because it doesn’t include the value of new service contracts we’re getting in areas such as international education, tourism, consultancy and two-way investment.
“The Chair of the NZ Pacific Business Council, Gilbert Ullrich, is doing a great job in promoting two-way trade, and his long experience in the Pacific is a great advantage to New Zealand companies needing to know more about the markets they’re entering.”
Manukau City Council is encouraging exporting and international trading links as part of its strategy to promote business and economic growth in the city.
But Sir Barry says there is also a lot that New Zealand businesses can do to promote the economies of Pacific nations where there is often a lack of skilled business people and entrepreneurs.
“I have built up strong relationships with many leaders in governments around the Pacific, and that is also helpful in expanding our trading links”. Sir Barry is planning to lead more delegations to other nations and islands of the Pacific.