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EU Offers Strong Financial Incentives

10th December 2004

EU Offers Strong Financial Incentives To New Zealand's Pacific Investors

New Zealand companies are being offered attractive financial incentives aimed at launching a new wave of regionally owned and controlled tourism projects in the Pacific.

The European Union has announced New Zealand investors are now eligible for grants of up to 50,000 Euros - about NZ$93,000.

Funding will be available to investors who attend an EU-backed pacific tourism investment conference in Fiji in February.

The Profit In The Pacific Investment Conference (February 1-4) is part of the EU's PROINVEST aid programme.

The initiative is aimed at promoting tourism related business partnerships in the South Pacific and building the income and job creation capabilities of the island tourism sectors. Up until now, cash incentives have only been available to European investors.

AUT Professor of Tourism Simon Milne is representing EU conference organisers in New Zealand.

Professor Milne says Profit In The Pacific will be the highest calibre tourism investment forum ever to take place in the Pacific region.

"The announcement of EU funding is a major boost for New Zealand investors," says Professor Milne.

"New Zealand companies can now secure up to $50,000 Euros as long as they form a formal business partnership at the PROINVEST meeting," he says. Partnerships can take the form or traditional equity based joint ventures, marketing/management agreements or technical assistance, "Their pacific partners must be companies registered in the Islands, and these pacific companies must control at least 51 percent of the operation."

The EU has identified and vetted more than 100 high quality Pacific tourism products worthy of investment.

The investment listings on offer range from construction and hotel accommodation projects through to small adventure tourism ventures.

Those seeking more information about the conference and the related investment opportunities can view the website at www.profitpacific.com . Tens of millions of dollars are expected to pour in the pacific region as a result of the new joint ventures, trading partnerships and technical assistance arrangements.

*The New Zealand Tourism Research Institute, based at the Auckland University of Technology <>, brings together experts in the tourism and hospitality arena. The Institute aims to develop timely and innovative research solutions for the tourism industry and those who depend on it. NZTRI's focus is on helping to develop a profitable and sustainable industry, which provides tangible benefits for business, residents and visitors. Current projects are in New Zealand, the South Pacific islands, Mexico, Newfoundland and Vietnam

ENDS

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