The innovation policy released by the Government today is the best single action that could be taken to grow high tech manufacturing and services in New Zealand, says BusinessNZ, Chief Executive, Phil O’Reilly.
“The planned advanced Technology Institute will operate in the border between business and science, providing a welcome focus on the development side of research and development.
“Exploiting untapped opportunities in the high tech manufacturing and services areas including ICT will be a major step forward for New Zealand’s economy.
“The economy needs both agriculture and high tech manufacturing and services to succeed. The Government is saying both are critical for economic success.
“Plans to transform IRL into a truly national facility with operations in our two largest manufacturing and exporting centres Auckland and Christchurch are entirely appropriate and will be welcomed by the manufacturing and exporting sectors,” Mr O’Reilly said.
“Meanwhile consolidating operations in Gracefield, Lower Hutt is a vote of confidence in the existing important work done in the Wellington region.
“The potential for the resulting Advanced Technology Institute to boost New Zealand’s economic growth is exciting.
“This undertaking will squarely address issues that in the past have led to valuable New Zealand-trained scientists leaving this country for opportunities overseas.
“Linking business and science is one of the most important issues for technology and productivity growth in New Zealand. It’s also in line with business thinking, as shown in the recent Deloitte BusinessNZ Election Survey, which ranked better connections between science and business as the number one issue needing more government investment. The Government is to be commended for this forward-looking policy,” Phil O’Reilly said.
Mr O’Reilly said the rest of the Powering Innovation Report recommending further action in the education sector should be paid close heed.
“It will be important that the Government continues to pay close attention to the report and getting maximum results for the benefit of New Zealand.”