New Zealandís recent exports, A J Hackettís
inaugural dive in 1986 resounded globally and
spawned a new sport
Life on the
is fuelling cutting-edge global industries in communications,
biotechnology and, of course, film
New Zealand enjoys one of the
lowest population densities in the world. Four million
inhabitants in a space similar to the size of the
United Kingdom mean New Zealanders have plenty of
room to think.
Its people have taken advantage
of this space to make the country what it is today,
coming up with the ideas that have driven New Zealand
forward. These ideas were often unreasonable: a belief
in conquering the worlds highest mountain, or
in making the worlds highest grossing film series
outside Hollywood. Yet New Zealands innovators
continue to have a real impact on the world.
So how to translate this can-do
attitude and creativity into economic growth? We
intend to move up the quality chain, insists
deputy premier and finance minister Michael Cullen,
In the agricultural sector, for instance, we
have to become more of an experimental farm and less
of a production farm.
This kind of thinking has
seen New Zealand move to the cutting-edge of traditional
sectors such as agriculture. However, the latest Kiwi
innovations are shaking up a range of industries worldwide.
By combining unreasonableness and a gift for creative
problem-solving, New Zealanders have the world in
their sights like never before.
Wellington-based Weta Workshop
provided design and digital solutions for the filming
of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, winning
a whole host of international awards in the process,
and has gone on to become a fixture of the international
film and television industry. Company director Richard
Taylor sees New Zealand as the inspiration for such
achievement: Over a very short lifespan, we
have seen New Zealand make a big contribution on the
world stage, fashioning things from our unique attributes,
our unabashed enthusiasm to give things a go.
ranked 2nd out of 175 countries in The World
Bankís 2007 Doing Business Survey
The country is also benefiting
from advances in communications that mean the tyranny
of distance is no longer such an issue.
We have a very specific and significant role
in the world: to make new things, says Brian
founder & director of The New Zealand Edge. He
is convinced that being at the edge of the world is
definitely not the end of the world. New Zealand
gives you a great vantage point from which to run
a global business. It gives you perspective as you
spend your time looking at and thinking about the
rest of the world.
The business environment is
certainly attractive. In 2007, the World Bank ranked
New Zealand second out of 175 countries in its Doing
Business survey, recognising the space and freedom
New Zealand gives its people and those from abroad
who all share a common aim to do business.
You can register a company
and be up trading within about two hours, says
New Zealand Trade and Investment CEO, Tim Gibson
we need to do is ensure that the broader business
environment in New Zealand remains benign to companies.
Premier Helen Clarkes
government is providing space for the growth of New
Zealands reputation, with the 2007 Business
Tax Reform lowering corporate rate tax to 30% and
bringing New Zealands tax laws in line with
international norms. Whilst we are focused on
the need to provide more of our own capital, we are
aware that there are a lot of good New Zealand companies
who would benefit greatly from some degree of offshore
involvement, says Dr Cullen.
Legislative reform is facilitating
growth and FDI, and developments in new sectors such
as communications and biotechnology are creating confidence
in the future. In this environment Kiwi ideas will
keep coming. In New Zealand theres time to think,
and plenty of opportunities to act upon.