Sister Cities New Zealand newsletter - February 2018

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N E W S L E T T E R February 2018


From the board Introducing Luke Qin, SCNZ advisor Luke Qin is an international trade manager with one of New Zealand’s leading banks. Luke is originally from Sichuan China, the “Province of Abundance”, home of world famous spicy cuisine and pandas. He first arrived in Christchurch as an international student and played 1st XV rugby for Linwood College in his first year in New Zealand despite not knowing the rules of the game previously. Aside from occasionally taking players out without the ball and pretending he did not speak English while playing rugby, he was a school prefect and received

many academic and contribution awards. After graduating from Canterbury University, he worked as a reporter and editor for a bilingual community newspaper, and in B2B sales in Christchurch before relocating to Wellington to work in banking, and gaining a Master of Applied Finance from Victoria University. Luke currently serves as National Vice President, Chair of Finance Committee and Wellington Branch President at the New Zealand China Friendship Society, an executive committee member of the New Zealand China Trade Association and a Board member of Transparency International New Zealand, with delegated authority in Affiliations & Financial Integrity Systems Assessment.

Redwood Forests- an unexpected (train) connection By Marilyn Gibbs, Wakefield, Nelson The Nelson Society of Modellers hosted over 300 delegates to their “Steam & Cinders” international model train convention at the Tahunanui Beach, Nelson in early January 2018. These model trains are large enough to carry passengers which both children and adults love to ride. There were approximately 80 different trains that attendees had brought to ride the wonderful train tracks at Tahunanui and to share rides with the public. In addition there were 16 traction engines and road vehicles also offering rides. The event was extremely well patronised by the public and the trains and traction engines were busy. At the same location is also a large Modellers pond which boats were sailed on as well. It was a very family orientated event. So where do Sister Cities come in? Nelson City and Eureka in Northern California share a Sister City link. Marilyn Gibbs, a member of the Nelson Eureka Sister City group, is also a quilter and her son Nigel and his family are actively involved in model trains

and organising the Convention. Marilyn offered to make a quilt for a raffle for the convention. After searching the web she found a fabric panel called “Redwood Express” designed by Marc Desobeau which featured a train travelling through the redwood trees. It also featured eight smaller panels showing different trains in different locations throughout the States. The panel was purchased from in the USA. One American attendee at the convention could not believe what he was seeing when he came to check in for registration and saw the quilt hanging on the wall. He said he had ridden the train in the central panel and two of the others shown, as well. It was something he did not expect to see when visiting New Zealand. On the reverse of the quilt the maker’s label included that statement “Nelson City has a Sister City relationship with Eureka in Northern California which is part of the world renowned Redwood Forests”. The quilt was won by Ken Sullivan of Christchurch.

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Auckland fields largest ever New Zealand mayoral-led business delegation to visit China By Pamela Jamieson, Auckland Council More than 850 delegates from Guangzhou, Los Angeles and Auckland registered to attend the 2017 Tripartite Economic Alliance Summit in Guangzhou on 8-10 November 2017. Auckland’s delegation consisted of 97 participants from 70 businesses, making it the largest ever New Zealand mayoral-led business delegation to visit China. As part of its global engagement strategy, Auckland Council’s Global Partnerships and Strategy Unit leveraged the organisation’s partner city relationships with Guangzhou and Los Angeles (LA) to establish the Tripartite Economic Alliance in November 2014. Under the Tripartite, summits have been held annually on a rotational basis between the three cities. In 2015, the inaugural Tripartite Economic Summit was held in LA, with the theme of ‘Innovation – through Commercialisation and Connectivity’. Auckland hosted the second Tripartite Summit in May 2016 with a focus on ‘Making Connections’. The third Tripartite Summit was hosted by Guangzhou with the theme of ‘The Power of Three’. The 2017 Summit provided a platform for political, business-to-business and cultural engagement between the three cities. The Summit was also an opportunity to showcase Auckland as a globally connected and innovative city. Auckland’s Mayor Phil Goff, the Mayor of Guangzhou, Wen Guohui, and the Deputy Mayor of LA, Jeff Gorell, led their respective delegations to undertake a range of targeted political, business and tourism activities. Prior to the Guangzhou Summit, Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED) organised a series of workshops to develop knowledge, capability and skills for building effective business partnerships in China. These pre-departure workshops attracted strong interest from Auckland businesses which resulted in the record number of delegates. The Auckland delegates were very positive about the event and the impact it had on their businesses. Making business connections and relationships, gaining a better understanding of the China market and key sectors, and meeting potential new customers were some of the main benefits of the Summit. During the Guangzhou Summit the three cities signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) renewing the

Tripartite Economic Alliance for a further three years. The MoU renewal recognises the importance of cityto-city relationships, understanding commonalities and cooperation. It will also enable Auckland companies seeking to enter the China and US markets to attend certain LA, Auckland and Guangzhou business and trade events e.g. Select LA Investment Summit (May 2018), Auckland TechWeek (May 2019) and potentially the Urban Innovation and Mayoral Forum in Guangzhou (November 2020). Other outcomes from the Summit included the signing of seven MoUs to support cooperation in tourism, urban planning, education and investment. Multiple business outcomes included the establishment of an urban design internship programme in Auckland; the finalisation of a significant deal in the film sector; and opportunities to promote Māori fashion designers in North Asia. In addition to the Summit itself, the Auckland delegate programme included business matching/networking opportunities; an LA-hosted business luncheon; an Auckland Showcase event, a site visit to Huawei’s Headquarters in Shenzhen and briefings with the New Zealand Consulate in Guangzhou. The Consulate provided valuable support in the lead-up and during the Guangzhou Summit. This included hosting a Commercial Roundtable chaired by NZ Ambassador to China, John McKinnon. Business leaders/specialists presented on the application of big data in urban management, prefabricated housing, bike sharing, and driverless cars and electric vehicles. The Consulate also hosted a Media Roundtable with eight Chinese media outlets resulting in extensive media coverage of New Zealand as well as Auckland. Māori culture and design were key elements of Auckland’s programme for the Summit. The Modern Māori Quartet (inmarket at the time) performed at the Tripartite Gala Dinner. The NZ Schools’ National Kapa Haka Champions - Raukura Kapa Haka Group from Rotorua - were in-market and wowed the 300 guests at the Auckland Showcase event which took place at the conclusion of the Summit programme. Entrepreneur and designer Kiri Nathan led a rōpū of seven Māori fashion designers who attended the

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Guangzhou Fashion Week and staged a Fashion Show featuring unique Māori fashion design. Their participation was supported by ATEED, Poutama Trust and the NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade.

Auckland will continue to celebrate the success of this exciting initiative and look to explore innovative ways to further enhance the Tripartite Economic Alliance in the future.

Auckland Council’s delegation to the Tripartite included, left to right, Steven Si from ATEED, Councillor Chris Darby, Pamela Jamieson, Global Partnerships & Strategy (GPS) at Auckland Council, Mayor Phil Goff, Councillor Ross Clow and Tao Chen from GPS.

Mayor Phil Goff and Councillor Chris Darby were keen to learn more about the operation of the Haizhu Tramcar in Guangzhou.

Cementing the Friendship - Shibukawa and Whakatāne Janie Storey, Whakatāne District Council Attention to detail, hospitality, ensuring their needs and interests of visitors are met and making sure interpreters are on hand is typical of Japanese exchanges. Officials from Shibukawa City Hall were no exception – all of the city hall staff clapped us into the building, there was a variety of activities, and visits to places of interest were paramount during the 4-day visit. Unfortunately, the autumn colours were mostly gone by the time we arrived, but it did not diminish the beauty of the area. 10 students and 2 teachers from Junior High Schools from Shibukawa in the Gunma Prefecture have been coming to Whakatāne in July which is the Japanese summer holidays for the past 30 years. In November 2016 Mayor Akutsu and a small delegation from Shibukawa visited Whakatāne and signed a formal friendship agreement to formalize the relationship which opened up a link for regular adult exchanges. Following an official visit to Kamagaya in November 2017 to celebrate our 20th Anniversary, the Whakatāne Mayoral delegation was welcomed

to Shibukawa with the typical Japanese grace and style. While the 20 adults stayed at a local hotel, the 10 Whakatāne High School students were home hosted with local families. Shibukawa is steeped in interesting history and has some resort hotels with spa facilities. A tour of the Gumma-ken Maizou Bunka Chosa Center gave a real insight into the history of the area with amazing relics on show. The High School teachers felt a real connection to the display of ancient tools and cooking pots and utensils, and each of the group made an ancient prayer stone. Taiko drumming and Māori cultural performances get the emotions flowing and the respective performances at Shibukawa were no exception – both groups had us enthralled, the performers were very professional and each group enjoyed sharing their culture with the audience. Other experiences included visits to an Elementary School, Kokeshi Craft doll making centre, a craft Sake brewery, Mizusawa udon noodle restaurant, 100 Yen shop, spa resort, the temple and walking the 365 stone step Ikaho-Isdhidan-Gai.

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Multi Fest 2018 & Hindu Festival of Colours Holi

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