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NZ placed to take advantage of Mid East Growth

Hon Pete Hodgson
Minister for Economic Development

5 December 2007 Media Statement
New Zealand well placed to take advantage of Middle East growth

New Zealand businesses looking to expand in the Middle East will soon be able to draw on the knowledge and experience of businesspeople in the region, says Economic Development Minister Pete Hodgson.

“The Middle East economy represents huge opportunities for New Zealand businesses.” Pete Hodgson was announcing the appointment of Mahmoud Haidar as the Chair of New Zealand Trade and Enterprise’s latest Beachhead Advisory Board.

The Dubai Beachhead Advisory Board is the fifth offshore Board to be established by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, as part of its global Beachheads programme designed to speed up the entry and growth of New Zealand companies in key markets, and joins Boards already operating in the Americas, the UK, South East Asia and India.

“The new Dubai advisory board, to be pulled together by Mr Haidar, will give companies access to the contacts, experience and expertise of senior local executives helping them to establish and expand their business in the Middle East.

“Securing the services of a businessman of the calibre of Mr Haidar indicates the high regard in which the Beachheads Programme and New Zealand companies are held.

“The business talent in the other Beachheads advisory boards around the world has helped New Zealand companies successfully get to grip with new markets and I’m sure the Middle East one will do the same.

“Rather than exporting to offshore markets, New Zealand businesses need to be operating in them so they can reap benefits such as being closer to customers and increasing speed to market.”

Mr Haidar has 18 years experience with blue-chip technology, services and consulting businesses in Europe, North America, the Middle East and Africa, and is in a good position to help New Zealand companies benefit from the boom in the Middle East economy.


Notes for editors

For commentary from Mahmoud Haidar on the opportunities for New Zealand businesses in the Middle East see a Q&A with him at:

About the Beachheads programme

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE)’s Beachheads programme helps high-growth potential exporters to establish and expand in new markets by providing access to business networks, information and advice.

The two-year programme is a unique partnership between NZTE and successful international executives committed to sharing their knowledge to accelerate the market entry and growth of Beachhead member companies.

The programme’s own international network of advisors gives companies access to the contacts, experience and expertise of senior executives who have ‘been there, done that’.

Beachheads advisors are a mixture of expatriate New Zealanders and locals who are committed to helping New Zealand business. Advisors offer robust advice to Beachheads companies about operating in each market and sector, and help to:
- provide strategic review and critical analysis of companies’ market development plans
- identify and target potential commercial contacts, and other resources
- introduce companies to their networks and contacts as appropriate.

Further information is available at

About New Zealand Trade and Enterprise

NZTE is the government’s national economic development agency, that works to stimulate economic growth by helping to boost export earnings, strengthening regional economies, and delivering economic development assistance to industries and individual businesses. As a global organisation, they use their knowledge and contacts in overseas markets to connect New Zealand businesses with trade and investment opportunities.

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