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Concern at ICT investment decline

Concern at ICT investment decline

Concern at the continued reduction in investment by multi-national ICT companies in the domestic market was expressed by the outgoing President of the Information Technology Association of New Zealand (ITANZ), Mr Nick Lambert, in his annual report.

“There is no shortage of local software and systems developers with world-class innovative solutions, but without the partnership opportunities offered by multi-nationals, many of these opportunities will never make it through development to distribution.

“Multi-nationals need to be encouraged to invest more in R&D in the domestic ICT market. However, global companies will inevitably hold back from further commitment, especially during times of recession, unless given more incentive than simply ‘access’ to a market that is tiny by their standards. There is no such thing as an even playing field.

“A healthy mix of local innovators and multi-nationals is needed to promote growth. This trend, if it continues, will be harmful in the long term.”

Mr Lambert said that on a more positive note the Government’s recent endorsement of many of the suggestions from the ICT Taskforce Report would seem to indicate a growing recognition that ICT is a key driver of New Zealand’s prosperity.

“However, I am uneasy that the necessary changes in the regulatory environment have been slow to materialise, jeopardising our ability to reach the ambitious targets set before us. We cannot underestimate the significant challenge that lies ahead if we are to achieve the ambitious growth targets outlined by the task force.”

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