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Indian Education Network export commendation

Office of Hon Jim Sutton
Speech Notes

20 November 2001

Indian Education Network export commendation,
Auckland

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, I'm delighted to be here today to present the India Education Export Network with a Trade New Zealand Export Commendation- just a year after I joined with you in India, and saw first hand what you were doing there.

The Indian Education Network was established in March 1998 - one of the earliest country market networks for education.

At the beginning, it had ten members and expects to have 20 by the end of this year. Today, there are 14 institutions receiving this Export Commendation for success in developing the Indian education market.

You should be very proud of your work ? the Indian education network has proved a most successful education export network and is now a model for other markets. New Zealand's international education sector is increasingly recognising the benefits of cooperating to compete offshore. Educational institutions have come a long way in the past five years and the results are obvious. The most basic measure is the foreign exchange earnings of $710 million last year, for example.

There is also the hard to quantify, less tangible benefit of the growing relationship between New Zealand and India, forged by the experiences of your students here in New Zealand.

As well as maximising value of your marketing dollar by acting collectively, Indian Education Export Network members also learn from each other, and share the risk of developing the Indian market.

Impetus for the India Education Export Network came in 1997 when Ian Stockwell, who was then Trade Commissioner in New Delhi, was talking with Tricia Reade of Manukau Institute of Technology and Jude Lydia of Unitech Auckland.

Tricia and Jude could see that New Zealand institutions couldn't achieve anything individually in India - critical mass was needed. The seed was sown and Tricia and Jude have been the champions of the India Education Export Network.

Working with Trade New Zealand, they attracted tertiary institutions from throughout the country to form the network, the objective being to take a strategic cooperative approach to developing the Indian tertiary education market ? a high risk but potentially lucrative market.

Collectively, the members of the Indian Education Export Network offer Indian students a diverse range of educational programmes at locations throughout the country - together, that's a very attractive package

Network activities include coordinated marketing campaign, education fairs and appointment of education advisors in key Indian cities.

Involvement of key allies has been critical to network's success - including Trade New Zealand, Education New Zealand, the New Zealand Immigration Service and Tourism New Zealand.

The New Zealand Immigrations Service has been involved since the beginning - it is vital to have them on board because of their role in taking students through the visa application process.

NZIS has helped vet and train the approved New Zealand network education advisors in India - this has helped to minimise fraudulent or non serious student applications - they are the first filter or line of defence.

The network has also used education advisers, who have proved to be a great marketing tool for the network. They have a lot of credibility with students and their parents and their backing by the network gives them real status in the market.

It's not an easy market. New Zealand is up against some tough competition in India - the United States, Australia and Britain, to name a few - but we are starting to carve out a strong place in the market

Four years ago, New Zealand's profile in India was down by the floorboards.

But since 1998, our profile has been lifted enormously as the result of the India Education Export Network, and by complementary activities of Tourism New Zealand and exposure from Indian film crews - it all adds impetus to the marketing push.

Exactly a year ago, I was with you all in India for the first ever New Zealand education export fairs, which attracted a huge response from interested students. There appears to be little doubt that these played a major role in achieving your excellent success, which we are celebrating today.

Those results are clear - 670 student visas issued in the 12 months to 30 June 2001, up from 256 in the same period the previous year - more than double. And I understand student visas issued in India will exceed 1000 in this calendar year - generating about $25 million in foreign exchange, directly and indirectly.

That's a great achievement.

I am delighted to have been associated with the activities of your network and to have the opportunity to present this export commendation to you all today. Congratulations!

Present Trade New Zealand Export Commendation Certificate (collected by Tricia Reade, IEEN chair).

Certificates of Appreciation (in alphabetical order) AIS St Helens Auckland University of Technology Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology Eastern Institute of Technology Manukau Institute of Technology Massey University Otago Polytechnic Pacific International Hotel Management School The University of Auckland The University of Waikato UNITEC Institute of Technology University of Otago Victoria University of Wellington

ENDS


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