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Virtual Community Takes E-Commerce Forward

Virtual Community Takes E-Commerce Strategy Forward

The Government’s e-commerce strategy took another step forward today with the launch of the ECAT Network in Hamilton.

Information Technology Minister Paul Swain launched the network at the University of Waikato at the first of a series of regional e-commerce events.

Other regional events will be held in the Wairarapa, Hawkes Bay and Taranaki over coming weeks.

Paul Swain said the network, an offshoot of the November 2000 E-Commerce Summit, is a virtual community with a shared interest in driving New Zealand’s uptake of e-commerce.

“What the Summit made clear is the remarkable level of good will and commitment to increasing New Zealand’s adoption and smart use of e-commerce and information and communication technologies generally,” Paul Swain said.

“The E- Commerce Action Team (ECAT) Network provides us with another vehicle for building on that good will," he said.

"The Network is an opportunity for organisations, individuals, communities and businesses to publicise their activities, share their experiences, expertise and solutions.

"Over time I hope to see the ECAT Network website www.ecat.govt.nz develop into a hub for information on e-commerce related activities.

"The ECAT Network complements the work of the ECAT Core Group, appointed in March 2001 and chaired by Sir Gil Simpson of Aoraki Corporation.

"It is charged with helping to advance the government’s e-commerce strategy, and encouraging and promoting the adoption of e-commerce within the private sector.

"Anyone may become a member of the Network, whether their e-commerce plans are advanced, or whether they are beginners.

"Already over 20 members have signed up covering a wide range of interests, including the Waikato Regional ECAT (WECAT), The Computers in Homes Project, Greymouth's Grow Industry and a growing number of businesses. Many of these members have contributed useful resources, and are willing to provide speakers on many aspects of e-commerce and ICT.

"The ECAT Network web site already carries a wide range of information and links, including research papers, statistics, case studies and the government’s E-commerce Guide.

"I encourage anyone with an interest in e-commerce to take an interest," Paul Swain said.

Ends

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