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ANZCCJ Welcomes New Zealand & Japanese Business Leaders to a Luncheon with Rt Hon Bill English

18 May 2017 10:18 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

ANZCCJ Welcomes New Zealand & Japanese Business Leaders to a Luncheon with Rt Hon Bill English


By Sam Brustad

The ANZCCJ hosted the Rt Hon Bill English, the Prime Minister of New Zealand at a working luncheon where he spoke to New Zealand, Australian and Japanese business leaders at the Conrad Hotel Tokyo on 17 May 2017.

  • The Prime Minister was accompanied by his wife, Dr Mary English, Trade Minister, Hon Todd McClay, and a delegation of leading business representatives from NZ.
  • This was part of Mr English’s first visit to Asia as Prime Minister, and he spoke at length about the strong relationship between Japan and New Zealand, as well as the future of the TPP11 deal.
  • Following the lunch was a round table for business leaders, and the signing of a ‘sports collaboration’ Memorandum of Understanding between the Japanese and New Zealand govts.

The ANZCCJ was proud to host a working luncheon for the visiting Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt Hon Bill English and his wife, Dr Mary English, at the Conrad Hotel Tokyo on 17 May 2017. In attendance from the Prime Minister’s delegation was the Trade Minister, Hon Todd McClay, leading business representatives from NZ, and local NZ media. Also in attendance were the New Zealand Ambassador to Japan, HE Stephen Payton, members of the ANZCCJ executive council, and local New Zealand, Australian and Japanese business leaders.

The event MC was ANZCCJ Executive Council Member, Catherine O’Connell, and HE Ambassador Payton introduced the Prime Minister. Both spoke of the rich potential for bilateral cooperation that this trip represented.

During his speech Prime Minister English spoke about his visit with Prime Minister Abe later that afternoon, and how best NZ could build on the “strategic cooperative partnership” that they had built with Japan. PM English stated that NZ had become known in Japan as a “reliable, safe supplier of high quality foodstuffs” and that Japanese investment into NZ enjoyed a stellar reputation for being high quality, long-term, and relationship-oriented.

He also acknowledged that Japanese investment had been key in helping to establish many NZ industries such as aluminum production. On top of this, joint investment and aid by NZ and Japan has been beneficial to the Pacific region and the NZ-JP relationship. Key to NZ’s success as one of the highest performing economies within the OECD, according to English, was high rates of transparency in govt and NZ’s open society that welcomed foreign trade, investment, and migrants.

One of the key messages of the PM’s Speech was to show how both NZ and Japan were strongly in favour of the TPP11 trade deal, as they were the only two countries to have ratified the original TPP agreement. PM English also stated that this agreement would play an important role in securing global financial stability, restoring confidence in multilateral trade deals and combat harmful protectionist rhetoric. He hopes to impress this upon ministers at a meeting to discuss this issue in Hanoi next week, with the aim that through greater trade and growth the US will once again be willing to join the deal. PM English also spoke about NZ’s fear of instability in East Asia due to the actions of the North Korean government, and the importance of international legal institutions in resolving the ongoing territory disputes within the region.

Finally, on the subject of Rugby, the PM welcomed the signing of the MoU on Sports Collaboration. In ending his speech, the PM spoke of the common democratic values that link Japan and New Zealand despite their geographic distance and cultural differences.

 Following this was a speech by JNZBC Chair, Mr Kiyotaka Shindo.

 ANZCCJ Media contact: Cristina Merino, ANZCCJ Executive Director

T 03 6234 9350 | E cristina.merino@anzccj.jp

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