Time to prove Wellington's mettle in light of PM's comments
Time to prove Wellington's mettle in light of PM's comments, says Yan
Wellington, May 7 2013 - Wellington mayoral candidate Jack Yan has responded to Prime Minister John Key’s earlier comments about the city ‘dying’.
While he acknowledges that the Prime Minister has since quickly backtracked on his comments, he believes that Wellington has the right ingredients to be an economic and cultural leader.
Mr Yan acknowledges that the capital’s economic growth is stagnant and that its population growth lags behind other major centres’, and that the Prime Minister has highlighted the distance between Wellington’s current political leadership and his own government.
He states, ‘The PM would have seen that the ingredients that men like the late Sir Paul Callaghan believed could lead an export recovery are here. Innovative thinking, intellectual capital. We just haven’t nurtured it properly because we’ve entrusted same-again politicians to do the job.’
He thanks the Prime Minister for raising a debate about what Wellington should be in the next half-century.
‘It’s election year, and it’s our opportunity to fix our problems,’ he says.
‘You’ll see from today’s reactions that there’s civic pride in Wellington, most likely because Wellingtonians see what I do: a more cultured, globally minded workforce that’s intelligent and savvy.’
With Mr Key identifying Weta as one of the firms that have succeeded in Wellington, Mr Yan says, ‘We know Sir Peter Jackson’s not alone¬because there are so many other innovators here, not necessarily in something as glamorous as film. They’re the backbone of our city’s economy.
‘You’ll also see that this identification with and sticking up for Wellington is the same energy that drives everything from trade to Olympic bids, more so than nation branding efforts have ever managed.’
Mr Yan says his plans, if elected Mayor in October, ‘call for not only identifying and promoting those great firms that are innovative and socially responsible, but the use of my knowledge globally to do just what is needed for Wellington.’
He also expects a better working relationship between the Mayor’s office and central government because of his record working with global firms at a high level.
‘It’s why in 2010, and again in 2013, I’ve made innovation a priority. Free wifi, which I proposed and we now have, was only a signal to say Wellington is open for business. The costs of extending it are relatively low. Pedestrianization, greening the CBD, and transportation improvements are needed¬and we have the nous and the knowledge to get them done,’ he says.
Jack Yan founded Jack Yan & Associates (http://jya.net), one of the world’s first virtual firms, in 1987, operating internationally. Among his company’s interests are business consulting, imaging, software and media, including the fashion magazine brand Lucire. He writes on topics, ranging from branding and business responsibility to fashion and typography, in numerous publications and journals worldwide and is a regular international speaker. He serves on the editorial board for The Journal of Brand Management. He has authored or co-authored numerous books, including Beyond Branding, Typography and Branding and, most recently, Nation Branding: Country Concepts and Cases. His personal site is at jackyan.com. He is a director of the Medinge Group (http://medinge.org), a think-tank in Sweden devoted to cutting-edge branding. He was one of the parties behind the successful bid for Miss Sweden in 2003 for Panos Emporio, and is general counsel of the Miss New Zealand Consortium, the New Zealand licensee for Miss Universe. Since 2006, he has been a mentor with Business Mentors New Zealand. In 2013, he announced his second bid for the mayoralty in Wellington, New Zealand, after netting 12 per cent of the vote on his first attempt.