Auckland to host major global economic competitiveness conference

Monday 6 December 2010, 4:02PM
By Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development


Auckland has been named as the host for the 2011 conference of The Competitiveness Institute, a week-long global economic and commerce summit that will bring more than 400 international business leaders, policy makers and researchers to the city.

The announcement, made Friday 3 December on the final day of the 2010 conference in New Delhi, has been warmly welcomed by Auckland Mayor Len Brown.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Auckland and New Zealand. By hosting such an influential conference here we are able to put our city and country on display and raise our profile among the global community.”

Mayor Brown said the conference was a valuable chance for Auckland to work together with the Government for the benefit of the whole country.

“The 2011 conference will provide a valuable opportunity to profile Auckland as a business location and to attract investment. By hosting this conference, we can forge valuable lasting relationships and position Auckland and New Zealand as a go-ahead, can-do business environment.”

Mayor Brown said for the first time, Auckland and New Zealand would showcase its economic platform, raising awareness among the global business community of a wide range of world-class local business opportunities.

“This conference offers a unique opportunity to access current thinking on international competitiveness and to hear directly from those who guide international economic policy.”

Founded in 1998 and based in Barcelona, the Institute has a focus on economic competitiveness and on business “clusters” or geographically grouped categories. It is a non-profit organisation with a network of more than 2,200 members in more than 100 countries.

New Zealand is emerging as a potential business hub, ideally located between the markets of Latin America and Asia. It has already led the world in establishing closer economic ties and trade agreements with both regions.

“New Zealand – and Auckland in particular – has a fortunate geographic advantage, being a developed economy almost exactly midway between developing markets in South America and Asia. We have also forged strong economic ties in both regions. I think the conference will be a perfect opportunity to advance thinking about how this works,” says Mayor Brown.

TCI President Alberto Pezzi and General Manager Patricia Valdenebro, from Barcelona, visited Auckland in October to confirm its suitability as a venue for the conference.

“I was very impressed with Auckland when I visited and saw first-hand why it has consistently scored well in international indexes for liveability. This is an opportunity for New Zealand and international delegates to share the most current thinking and practices in building inclusive, innovative and above all competitive economies. The conference will showcase Auckland to influential people from many countries and provide global business leads and networks for top-performing local companies and business clusters,” says Mr Pezzi.

The first two days of the conference will include visits to high profile New Zealand businesses active in key industry and commerce sectors. The options will be confirmed in coming weeks and are likely to include marine, food and beverage, biotechnology, agriculture technology and aviation.

The conference will be held at the Sky City Conference Centre in Auckland from 28 November to 2 December 2011, shortly after the conclusion of Rugby World Cup 2011.