I have just made my 20th visit to China, and it continues to boom. More than a million people a month have left behind extreme poverty over the past 20 years. More than a thousand new vehicles are registered every hour. The new Beijing airport will efficiently welcome more than a million passengers a week (The Dominion-Post, 14 March 2008).
China is changing, and the opportunities for New Zealand businesses are immense. With the imminent signing of the Free Trade Agreement between China and New Zealand, we will be entering a new phase in our relationship with China. Once again, New Zealand is leading the world in the opening up of China to international trade and investment. I am proud of the contribution New Zealanders are making to China's economic development and integration within the world economy. I'm also proud to support the work of the China-New Zealand Business Council in forging links between European, Maori and Chinese New Zealanders, and in developing a 'NZ Inc' approach to business partnerships in China.
If you are already a member of CANZBC, welcome. If you are not yet a member, I urge you to consider becoming a member or sponsor of CANZBC. Don't let this historic opportunity pass you by."
Rt Hon Mike Moore
(Mike Moore is a former Prime Minister of New Zealand and was Director General of the World Trade Organisation at the time of China's accession to the WTO.)