Auckland mayor Phil Goff leads a group of 97 delegates representing 70 Auckland businesses taking part in the third Tripartite Economic Alliance summit which opens today in Guangzhou, China.
2 councillors, finance & performance committee chair Ross Clow and planning committee chair Chris Darby, are also in the delegation.
Mr Goff said before leaving for China: “This will be Auckland’s largest ever trade delegation. Businesses clearly see the advantage of interacting with our 2 sister cities at the summit. Each are gateway cities to 2 of the most important & powerful economies in the world.”
The Guangzhou summit is the last of 3, which started in Los Angeles in 2015 and continued in Auckland last year. However, the 3 city councils have agreed to extend the special relationship for another 3 years with opportunities for interaction between them outside the formal summit process.
The Guangzhou summit runs for 3 days, allowing Auckland businesses to generate partnership & investment opportunities with counterparts from Los Angeles & Guangzhou, and for Auckland to showcase the city as a destination for investment & tourism.
Mr Goff said: “Auckland is New Zealand’s international city and represents 38% of the country’s gdp. As our city grows, investment & business partnerships become increasingly important to it & New Zealand’s future.
“Guangzhou & Los Angeles are global economic powerhouses, as well as a major source of migrants, students & tourists. The formal partnership between our cities creates opportunities for us to facilitate the continued growth of local businesses & our economy.
“The summits provide real economic value & jobs to Auckland, with deals ranging from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars sealed as a result of the past 2 events.
“For Auckland, those agreements mean more jobs, business expansion, talent coming to our city, and New Zealand innovation & expertise finding new opportunities offshore.”
Mr Goff said the Bank of NZ, Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and NZ Trade & Enterprise were supporting Auckland’s delegation to the summit this year, which had enabled about half the cost of Auckland’s delegation budget to be met by the private sector.
One point of interest for Mr Goff is the Haizhu electric tram: “We are working with government to bring light rail to Auckland as quickly as possible. It’s a good chance to learn from the success of other light rail systems around the world and consider what is the best system for Auckland.”
Attribution: Mayoral release.