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Latest IT Statistics Show A Booming Industry

27 March 2000

LATEST IT STATISTICS SHOW A BOOMING INDUSTRY

The latest statistics about the New Zealand Information Technology market show a booming industry worth billions of dollars to New Zealand.

The figures, released by Information Technology Minister Paul Swain, are the seventh annual release of IT Statistics in New Zealand.

"These statistics show more than ever the real benefits waiting for New Zealand in the new economy," he said.

"The total NZ IT market in 1999 was worth $6.03 billion – up 7.2% on the year before, and if you include telecommunications services that total is $9.5 billion compared with $9 billion in 1998.

"Our IT exports are valued at almost five times that of the wine industry with exports in 1999 up 17% on the previous year to a total of $558 million.

"We saw an increase of 44% in software and services exports and an increase of 50% in computer and education services exports. However, there was a small decrease in communications hardware exports in 1999.

"New Zealand computer expertise exports cover a huge range, including accounting services, medical systems and health services, energy billing, navigation and even legal practise software systems.

"The successes we've seen in expertise export have been stunning, the only thing stopping faster expansion has been a shortage of appropriately skilled people.

"One Auckland company expanded its consultancy services in the US from half a million dollars a year to more than four and a half million a year. That company exports software products but its principal export value is in the form of expertise, placing New Zealanders offshore on short term contracts.

"And Wellington firm, SeraNova (formerly Azimuth), saw its New Zealand revenues grow by 25% between 1998 and 1999 and its offshore revenues grow by over 50%, from $7,600,000 to $11,500,000 million. The company has new business in Indonesia, India, Thailand, UK and USA.]
"As much of this points out New Zealanders are seeing the value of the online world and New Zealand is becoming an increasingly connected society. A February NBR/Compaq survey found that 50% of New Zealanders over 18 have access to the Internet at home or work, and 37% are accessing the Internet at least once per week.

"Results of last week's ITAG initiated survey of information communications technology use in schools are included in this report.

"The ITAG survey showed that 96% of primary and 99% of secondary schools now report some type of connection to the Internet and that usage of the Internet in schools has almost doubled since the previous survey in 1998.

"On the tertiary front a survey of IT courses being taught in NZ universities indicates that there are more than twice the numbers of students studying IT and related subjects than has been acknowledged previously.

"I am heartened by the information in this report. It is concrete evidence that New Zealanders are embracing the IT challenges of the new online economy.

"The challenge for this government is to do everything it can to keep the momentum going and help other businesses and New Zealanders board the IT wave of success," Paul Swain said.

For further comment please contact kerry.lamont@parliament.co.nz

For copies of the report contact:

Frank March - Specialist Advisor - IT Policy group - Ministry of Economic Development
04 474 2908 - Email frank.march@moc.govt.nz or you can view the papers online at:
http://www.med.govt.nz/pbt/infotech/currentstats/


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