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Nats flag $10 billion industry

18 October 2006

Nats flag $10 billion industry

"It is disappointing that National will not support highly valuable areas of the New Zealand economy with its latest sad attack on an initiative that has been widely applauded by our 3D digital content industry," Economic Development Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

"The Labour-led government is committed to increasing the number of firms that can compete offshore as part of our agenda to transform New Zealand into an export-led, innovative, and high wage economy.

"Unlike National which has shown today it is incapable of supporting innovative areas of the New Zealand economy, this government is prepared to be bold and to seize significant opportunities to grow our economic base.

"The government's initiative involving Right Hemisphere means we can help some of our best brains and entrepreneurs stay in New Zealand, and it has also secured benefits for other firms and researchers working in this area.

"This is targeting winners because we believe that by doing so, there will be substantial benefits for our economy and other firms working in this area who will be able to cluster around and leverage off Right Hemisphere's strengths and expertise through the initiative.

"The aim of this initiative is to secure New Zealand's place as a world leader in this niche global market that is forecast to be worth $10 billion in ten years - a goal which National clearly does not give a toss about, judging by Mrs Rich's sad comments today. National is flagging New Zealand involvement in this $10 billion industry.

"The spillover benefits include a research programme, development of international connections between kiwi firms and offshore venture capitalists and markets, software benefits and technology spillovers to other firms. They have been overwhelming endorsed by firms and researchers working in this area, including Dunedin-based Taylor Made productions, the Canterbury Development Corporation, Electronics South, and HIT Lab NZ.

"This all shows how out of touch National is with this industry, its potential and its key players.

"It also shows how ignorant Mrs Rich is when it comes to government processes and the stringent criteria which were met when this initiative was agreed to," Trevor Mallard said.

ENDS

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