The first New Zealand ICT trade mission to China, which will be led by ICT Minister Steven Joyce, takes place next week.
The mission, which is designed to help New Zealand ICT companies build a sustained presence in China, will visit Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen from October 17–22. It will be the sixth ministerial-led mission to China in the past six months and is part of the New Zealand Trade and Enterprise’s commitment to leveraging business opportunities around this year’s international Expo in Shanghai.
The companies taking part are 2degrees, 4RF Communications, Datacom Services, Mako Networks, Mobile Mentor, Mobilis Networks, Navman Wireless, Open Cloud, Orion Health, Pingar and Tomizone. In addition, ICTNZ CEO Brett O’Riley will be travelling with the mission.
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise director of ICT Richard Laverty says the focus is on companies with telecoms and geospatial capabilities and that the businesses taking part are good mix of “small exciting start-ups and quite large companies with multiple hundreds of million revenues.”
A key objective of the mission is finding new markets in China for New Zealand ICT products and services.
“A lot of people have thought about China as a market where you would go to source competitively priced equipment for your own business but increasingly we’re seeing in the ICT sector and in other sectors, engaging in China as a market for selling industrial or consumer goods,” Laverty says.
“We’re grateful and positive to have the Minister with us because when you’re taking a delegation to countries like China that ministerial presence opens doors and a level of credibility,” he says.
The ministerial-level mission is the first step in implementing an arrangement of cooperation between the Ministry of Economic Development and its Chinese counterpart that was signed when Prime Minister John Key first visited China in April 2009 and met with Premier Wen Jiabao.
According to information issued to Computerworld, the New Zealand government intends to develop a similar relationship wtih China, in terms of its ICT, as it has with Korea under KANZ:
“We would also like to agree a forward work programme to identify priority areas, and we see value in pursuing a bilateral ICT project similar to that being explored under the Korea, Australia and NZ (KANZ) arrangements," a spokesperson says.
“The current KANZ project is investigating the opportunity to bring three companies together from Korea, Australia and NZ that have complementary offerings to create a unique ICT product or service. It would have some level of government support from each country to enable the research and opportunity identification phase. A similar approach could be applied to the China-NZ relationship.”