Mayors from Kāpiti, Wellington, Porirua and Hutt City have signed an historic ‘Memorandum of Co-operation’ (MOC) on trade and economic affairs with the Zhejiang region of China.
And small group from the Chines delegation — including representatives from electronics and advanced technology firms, and investors — visited Kāpiti this week to meet clean technology companies from across the region at the Ōtaki Clean Technology Centre.
Population of 54 million
Zhejiang has a population of 54 million and an economy the size of Sweden. With a GDP of over $(US)495 billion, Zhejiang is regarded as one of the most prosperous provinces in China. The province has 2.17 million small businesses ( representing 84 per cent of its total business base). The delegation’s led by the Zhejiang Governor, Mr Xia Baolong.
The agreement, signed at the Wellington City Council Chambers, is one of several initiatives undertaken by the 180-strong trade mission from the capital of the province, Hangzhouon, during their visit to the Wellington region this week.
It covers trade and business promotion, an exchange of consultancy services — and trade missions, exhibitions and seminars.
The visit to Ōtaki
During the visit to Ōtaki Clean Technology Centre, the Chinese saw demonstrations of New Zealand’s fastest EV (electric) motor cycles from the Astara company, and water being blended into diesel from APT/Blended Fuels NZ
This was followed by a discussion and exchange of ideas between the local NZ companies and the Chinese entrepreneurs.
Mayor Jenny Rowan said it was a ‘positive and successful day’ and the visiting Chinese entrepreneurs were keen to explore and establish future business relationships with many of the companies.
She said signing the agreement was an excellent example of regional cooperation; and it was great to see councils in the region working closely with Government departments to advance trade and economic cooperation.
Members of the Chinese mission also signed a Wellington Trade and Business Cooperation Projects agreement.
The delegation included representatives from the Zhejiang Radio and Television Group, who plan to make a documentary about Wellington. Zhejiang Television is broadcast throughout China with a potential reach of 900 million people.
And the Chinese and English language version is expected to be broadcast in 56 countries.
Mayor Rowan also said while that, while there is a huge disparity in size between the two regions, Wellington has a lot to offer in: creative and cultural opportunities — as well as partnerships in health, education, science and clean-technology.