Wednesday, 2nd July, 2014

Catching the Pacific Wave

The Pacific Wave - Accelerating Export Growth Conference held in Auckland on 24 June at Sky City Convention Centre highlighted trade opportunities in or to the Pacific Islands.

Shane Jones, the newly appointed ambassador for Pacific Economic Development, MFAT, spoke about the opportunities in this fast growing region.

“Having recently returned from the Pacific Mission with the Prime Minister, I’ve seen the economic development focus being embraced far more than in previous visits as part of the Labour Government from 2005-2008. In Niue, for instance, tourism is growing and the benefits to the community are clear to see. Solar energy is taking root in places like Tonga. And with my new appointment, I’m in a position to assist further, ” he said.

Other key speakers included Adrian Orr, CEO, Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation), as well as Jennifer Boggiss, director and co-founder of Heilala Vanilla who shared her exporter success story , and Robert Oliver, the well- known Pacific chef and author and Winner of the 2014 Gourmand Award for best TV Chef Cookbook in the World (“Me’a Kai”). The Conference was ended in style with entertainment provided by Fijian singer Erakah.

Nathalie Malfeyt, international manager of Auckland Chamber of Commerce believes the conference provided a perfect networking platform and some impetus for trade with countries in the Pacific Islands.

“A great momentum was created for further growth in a region that no longer should be regarded as the ‘youngest brother’ of the Pacific,” she said.

The conference was organised by the Pacific Cooperation Foundation visit for more information.