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Project extend benefits from World Expo

Project extend benefits from World Expo

The benefits of New Zealand's presence at the 2005 World Expo in Aichi, Japan, are expected to extend far beyond this year with the implementation of the second stage of the Aichi Leveraging Fund, Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton said today.

Eight Aichi leveraging fund projects have been approved for the 2005/2006 year, with the aim of leveraging off New Zealand's high profile presence at the Aichi World Expo this year.

The Aichi Leveraging Fund project is a four-year GIF project which began in 2004/2005. The ultimate aim of the project is to improve commercial, cultural and people-to-people links between Japan and New Zealand.

The Aichi Leveraging Fund projects are managed by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, in association with other agencies, to ensure that maximum benefit is obtained from New Zealand's investment in the World Expo.

Mr Sutton said the World Expo in Aichi was a huge event, with more than 12.5 million people from around the world visiting the event so far.

"Of those, a huge 2.5 million people have visited the New Zealand Pavilion, 20 per cent of the Expo's total visitor numbers. That is a huge achievement and one that we must build on.

"The New Zealand Pavilion has made a big impact on the general public, business people and companies alike, so it is vital that we now capitalise on the connections we have made."

Four Aichi Leveraging Fund projects from 2004/2005 will continue in 2005/06.

There are three new projects - a programme to maximise opportunities for New Zealand ICT exporters, a study of the New Zealand/Japan trade and economic relationship, and a programme to develop collaborative ICT relationships between New Zealand organisations and researchers, through partnering with key Japanese companies.In addition, a Sister Cities project deferred in 2004/2005 will be implemented this year.

Background: Aichi Leveraging Fund Project Summary 2005/06

1a. Title: Maximising Opportunities for New Zealand ICT Exporters - Lead Agency: NZTE Summary of project: The ICT industry is the biggest and fastest growing sector in Japan. The project proposes to scope Japan's ICT market within key verticals and evaluate commercial opportunities with the objective of developing a programme of activities in Japan.

1b. Title: A Study of the New Zealand ? Japan Trade & Economic Relationship - Lead Agency: MFAT/NZTE Summary of project: This will provide New Zealand governmental agencies with a key research document exploring strengths and weaknesses of existing trade, the potential for growth, and consideration of methods of moving the trade and economic relationship forward.

2. Title: Greenhouse Gases - Lead Agency: AgResearch Summary of project: NZ-Japan research initiative using new DNA-based techniques to explore factors affecting methane emissions from livestock.

3. Title: Nanocomposite Technology - Lead Agency: Landcare Research Summary of project: to use NZ's science capability and established collaborative network in Japan to develop clay-polymer nanocomposites (first used by Toyota in the early 1990's for timing belt cover devices) for potential commercial applications in New Zealand and Japan.

4. Title: Talent and Skills - Lead Agency: NZTE Summary of project: a pilot training project with Japan to improve workplace productivity by exposure to world class practices in specialised manufacturing design and processing.

5. Title: Utilising & Developing Citizens' Diplomacy through the Sister Cities Network -Lead Agency: Sister Cities NZ (Inc) Summary of project: The earliest sister city links between Japan and NZ were established in 1972 (Nelson/Miyasu) and 1974 (Christchurch/ Kurashiki). Building increased awareness of and interest in sister cities, sharing best practice nationally, and better highlighting opportunities that provide economic benefit to NZ will be explored.

6. Title: Biotech in Japan - Lead Agency: NZTE Summary of project: investigating the value in establishing an on-the-ground presence in Japan (probably but not limited to food, health and biomedical science).

7. Title: ICT ? Japan and Kurashiki Digital City - Lead Agency: Canterbury Development Corporation Summary of Project: Developing collaborative projects between New Zealand organisations, firms and researchers to enable New Zealanders to unlock global value chains in ICT through partnering with key Japanese companies.

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