Export Promotion Needed
Trade Promotion, And National Campaign Needed For Exports To Grow
The Employers and Manufacturers' Association and the Exporters Institute today jointly issued a call for a greater focus on trade promotion funding if New Zealand is serious about growing its exports and overhauling the current account deficit.
"Exporters must be assisted to attend the same trade shows year after year, not just on a one off basis, if we are to make a strong impact on key markets in higher value New Zealand products," said Garth Wyllie Executive Officer for the Joint Trade Committee of the two organisations.
"All our overseas representatives must also be charged with working together to identify market opportunities and focus on a national campaign for export growth.
"Consistent attendance is a key to gaining entry against the strong competition into many markets.
The hurdles set for participation with the limited funding available, are much too high to encourage long term participation in trade promotions. New Zealand exporters are often not able to meet the costs on their own.
"If turnover is greater than $5 million a company will not qualify for trade promotion assistance.
"Exporters don't only need realistic trade promotion assistance, but also proactive support by all New Zealand agencies, with every overseas post helping business find markets and look for genuine opportunities in the markets they service.
"We have to generate a major new nation wide campaign to achieve this.
"Our government organisations tend to operate autonomously but they need to work collectively in the national interest to achieve the aim of more export growth.
"Trade New Zealand does a good job on limited funding, but if properly resourced and working actively with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs both organisations could achieve considerably more.
"Every diplomat, government representative or politician must consider themselves a trade representative of New Zealand.
"This means our investment in export market development must be targeted to maximise New Zealand's export income if our standard of living is to be maintained and for exports to lead the economy forward."