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NZCTA Southern Update

Commentary

By Michelle MacWilliam

The first function of 2013 for NZCTA Southern was held and very well received with Mr Alan Lai, director and founder of Agria, sharing his insights into concluding successful business relationships both here and China. The main take-away from his speech was to build and closely nurture the personal relationship; this is a major take-away for our New Zealand business culture which is traditionally based more on a transactional relationship.

Among our attendees for this function were Vice Counsel General Dr Chu Yanli, and Trade and Investment Consul Fan Jianhong representing the Chinese Consulate based in Christchurch. Both enjoyed the opportunity to meet some independent businesses in Christchurch who are trading with China. This opportunity to meet and connect with the Consulate was also welcomed by the attending business community

Mr Tim White, Chair of NZCTA and a board member of the NZ China Council was also present. Tim is a travelling member of Prime Minister John Key’s high level trade delegation to China in April. Tim assured me that he would be available to present his summary of this trip at one of our meetings in the coming months.

NZCTA Southern extends its best wishes to Mayor Bob Parker, and those accompanying him as they embark on their Sister Cities visit to China to foster investment in Christchurch’s business and education sectors and to express the city’s thanks for the support it received post-earthquake. The delegation includes representatives from the Canterbury Development Corporation, the China Sister Cities Committee, Christchurch Educated, University of Canterbury, Lincoln University, St Bedes College, Lincoln High School, Cashmere High School and Middleton Grange.

“One of the stated aims of the Sister Cities programme is to seek opportunities in education and cultural exchanges as well as trade and tourism development, and that’s the real focus of this latest visit” Mayor Parker says. "We have a lot of discussions lined up in regards to our current cooperative programmes, how they can be enhanced and expanded, and to engage with those all-important universities and investment communities in Wuhan and Gansu Province."

We look forward to hearing and seeing the tangible results from this visit as the sectors mentioned such as trade and tourism development are key Canterbury businesses that represent the engine houses of the recovery in the Canterbury Rebuild.

This month’s speaker is Kefeng Chu, Chief Advisor China, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise. Kefeng will be discussing topics relevant to the Southern membership as they trade with China.

The meeting is to be held on Monday 29th April 2013 at Eliza Manor House, 82 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch