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Insurers welcome Christchurch Central Development Unit

18 April 2012

Insurers welcome establishment of Christchurch Central Development Unit

The Insurance Council says it welcomes today’s announcement by the Earthquake Minister, Hon Gerry Brownlee, that a Christchurch Central Development Unit focussing on the rebuilding of the Christchurch Central Business District (CBD) is to be established.

Chief Executive, Chris Ryan, says the Council supports the establishment of the Development Unit, under the auspices of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA), as a means of adding significant momentum to the rebuild of the central city and in the longer term, attracting investment to ensure the long term sustainability of the Canterbury Region.

From an insurer’s perspective, a well planned, well designed and well built business hub is critical for the life blood of any major city as it drives the agenda for commercial success, including the success of the insurance industry, which in turn translates back into the productive economy of the region, creating wealth and realising opportunities for the people who live and work there.

As New Zealand’s second major city serving a region which makes a considerable contribution to New Zealand’s economy, it is vital Christchurch has the infrastructure in place to achieve the ingredients for an ongoing and successful future.

With the set-backs to the local economy and people’s livelihoods experienced from the disastrous earthquakes, the establishment of the Development Unit must provide the leadership and vision needed for rebuilding a city every Cantabrian can be proud of and a city that will attract visitors domestically and from abroad, Chris Ryan says.

Insurance payouts to date from private insurers totalling more than $NZ 5 billion dollars are the beginning of what is expected to a $20 billion dollar private insurance contribution to the Canterbury economy by the time the Christchurch rebuild programme is completed. The Insurance Council strongly encourages people receiving earthquake related insurance payouts to reinvest in the local Canterbury economy to ensure the region as a whole benefits.

ENDS

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