Chinese Mayors representing around 80 million citizens will gather in Wellington on 3-4 December for talks with their Kiwi counterparts.
Fifteen Chinese mayors and vice-mayors from mid and large-sized cities will visit for the second New Zealand China Mayoral Forum to further strengthen relationships between regions of both countries.
They will be joined by 33 mayors from across New Zealand, from our biggest city Auckland to some of our smaller regional centres.
The Forum, hosted by Local Government New Zealand and Wellington City Council, is the second time Mayors from China and New Zealand will meet, following the inaugural 2015 Forum in Xiamen.
Trade and investment opportunities in tourism, education and primary industries will be central to discussions at this year’s Forum. China is New Zealand’s largest source of foreign students, with 34,000 in 2016, second largest source of tourists, with over 400,000 visitors in 2016, and in 2016 took $9.4 billion of export goods with primary products top of the list.
A business forum and matching session will also provide an opportunity for businesses from both countries to engage in discussions on future trade and investment opportunities.
LGNZ President Dave Cull says the Forum is an excellent opportunity for both the country as a whole and the regions to enhance relationships with New Zealand’s largest trading partner.
“There is much to be gained for our communities in developing a greater understanding and appreciation of how China operates,” Mr Cull says. “Face to face meetings at the sub-national level provide the opportunity for the representatives of our cities, districts and regions to engage directly and look for mutually-beneficial economic development opportunities.”
Wellington Mayor Justin Lester says the capital is proud to be hosting the event, and he will be looking to share the Wellington story with the visiting contingent.
“China is a hugely important partner and destination for Wellington business. I’m very excited that such a major forum is being hosted in the capital,” Mr Lester says. “This will be a great opportunity to show off what we love about Wellington to an important international audience.”
The Forum is supported by platinum sponsor the China Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand and the Bank of China, with additional support from sponsors Huawei, the University of Otago, the University of Auckland’s Centre for Asia-Pacific Excellence, Victoria University of Wellington, Silver Fern Express Ltd, China Travel Services Ltd and the New Zealand China Council.
The talks will include mayors, vice mayors and officials from the following Chinese cities: Xiamen City, Beijing City, Guangzhou City, Shenzhen City, Hohhot City, Guilin City, Dunhuang City, Baoji City, Qingyuan City, Huaibei City, Liaoyang City, Heihe City and Qingdao City. Attendance from another two cities from Ningxia Hui People's Autonomous Region and Hebei Province will shortly be confirmed.
The talks will include mayors and officials from the following New Zealand towns, cities and districts: Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Dunedin, Palmerston North, Tauranga, Rotorua, Hastings, Whanganui, Rangitikei, Timaru, Taupo, Matamata-Piako, Central Otago, Nelson, Gisborne, Clutha, Tararua, Manawatu, Central Hawke’s Bay, Hurunui, Hauraki, Porirua, Marlborough, Gore, Selwyn, Kawerau, Opotiki, Kapiti, Ashburton, Invercargill, Upper Hutt and Hutt City.