As I write this, people, on this side of the Tasman at least, are up in arms over the decision by the two biggest Aussie supermarket chains to strip New Zealand products off their shelves in favour of Australianmade products. Hardly in the spirit of ANZAC or CER, I would have thought, and by the time you read this hopefully things will have blown over.
Such a move is not sustainable taking into account the close, intertwined nature of our two markets, and the sheer number of expat Kiwis now living in Australia.
It’s estimated that there are nearly 300,000 Kiwis living in Australia on those ‘non-protected’ Special Category Visas alone – but if you add on all the Kiwis who migrated across the ditch in the years before the visa came into force (my brother in 1984 for example, who still considers himself a Kiwi), then you have a considerable percentage of the Australian population who really would prefer access to competitive New Zealand products. And that’s not counting the many Australians who’ve acquired a taste for our fine fare over the years! I’m sure they won’t want their favourite brands taken away.
So let’s not get carried away with ‘tit-for-tat’ responses (I did consider boycotting my local Countdown); hopefully everybody will quickly see sense and choices will return to the shopping trolleys. In the meantime, let’s cross our fingers that New Zealand F&B exporters will not be impacted too heavily. Commercial decisions like this one just don’t make sense.
February marked the beginning of the Year of the Horse, so in this issue we thought it timely to take a fresh look at the China market opportunity – and primarily through the eyes of people on the ground in Shanghai who’re totally engaged in the export sector.
What this report reveals is, yes China is still an incredibly challenging market, but more Kiwi firms are learning how to conquer it, and the opportunities are continuing to expand.
If you’re looking to take on China – the Year of the Horse could well be perfect timing. Glenn H. Baker email@example.com