As Auckland prepares to welcome the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) meeting this week, a senior Chinese delegation will also attend to explore opportunities for trade and investment with New Zealand.
“We are honoured that China which is hosting APEC this year has invited New Zealand to host the first ABAC meeting for 2014. And we are delighted that as well as the 250 ABAC delegates, a 40-strong Chinese delegation from the APEC China Business Council (ACBC) will also be visiting,” said BusinessNZ CEO Phil O’Reilly.
The delegation will follow a parallel programme of meetings in Auckland and Hamilton and will attend some of the ABAC events.
“China is now New Zealand’s largest trade partner. This visit gives us the opportunity to continue to build key relationships and the value proposition for expanded business with New Zealand,” said Mr O’Reilly.
A key focus for the delegation’s programme is a New Zealand China Forum to be held by the New Zealand China Council.
“The Council’s mandate is to expand the relationship across the board,” said Council Chair Sir Don McKinnon. “The Forum will update New Zealand’s latest economic indicators and consider key issues in the relationship especially in relation to food and agriculture as well as investment and innovation.”
Senior Chinese business leaders from a range of sectors are participating in the delegation. The visit is also aimed at stimulating New Zealand business interest in the APEC CEO Summit to be held in Beijing 8-10 November.
“China’s continuing economic strength is good news but we need to work harder to capitalize on the advantage given by our FTA,” said Phil O’Reilly. “Visits such as this, and the APEC meetings to be held in China this year give us a great opportunity to highlight New Zealand’s capabilities and the win-win benefits from even closer ties.”
The ABAC meeting is being organized by BusinessNZ on behalf of ABAC New Zealand. Major partners include the New Zealand Government, Fonterra, ANZ, ATEED, Auckland Council, Air New Zealand and the Meat Industry Association.