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Screen Production Figures Wake-Up to Trade Negot'n

MEDIA RELEASE

31 August 2006

Good Screen Production Figures Provide Wake-Up Call to Government Trade Negotiators

Screen production figures released today by Statistics New Zealand highlight the important contribution this sector makes to the New Zealand economy.

They also highlight a need for the services sector to be a high priority for Government in its trade negotiations, according to Wellington Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive, Charles Finny.

“The statistics show that the New Zealand screen industry generated turnover of over $2.6 billion in the 2005 financial year – a figure comparable with both the horticulture, and forestry and logging sectors,” Mr Finny said.

“The industry’s contribution to New Zealand’s foreign exchange earnings is now substantial with sixty two percent of screen production companies’ output being exported.

“These figures highlight the need to be ambitious about the way we incorporate this sector in negotiations on Free Trade Agreement. Creative industries, including film and video, have effectively been excluded from recent FTA’s. Services have yet to be included in the Thailand FTA.

“The exciting and innovative work which New Zealand has become so good at exporting must not take a backseat to traditional goods when it comes to FTA negotiations.

“The figures also highlight the important contribution the sector makes to the Wellington region. Twenty seven percent of New Zealand’s screen industry businesses are located in Wellington.

The Wellington region’s economy is one of the most dependent on the service activities of any region in New Zealand. 90% of our regional GDP is generated by services activity, Mr Finny concluded.


ENDS

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