NZ thor­ough­breds sent to China

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

A land­mark ship­ment of horses trav­elled to China last week, mark­ing the first sig­nif­i­cant in­vest­ment in the New Zealand thor­ough­bred in­dus­try from the world’s fastest-grow­ing econ­omy in many years.

With the help of New Zealand Thor­ough­bred Mar­ket­ing and Jonathan Hope from Cam­bridge Equine Hospi­tal, 64 horses were bought by the In­ner- Mon­go­lia Rider Horse In­dus­try Co. The horses spent the past month in quar­an­tine be­fore be­ing flown to Shang­hai last Tues­day with New Zealand Blood­stock Air­freight.

‘‘We view this as a mu­tu­ally ben­e­fi­cial part­ner­ship,’’ said Cathy Yang who as­sisted the In­ner- Mon­go­lia Rider Horse In­dus­try Co with their pur­chas­ing.

‘‘There is an in­creas­ing de­mand for horses in China, while for­eign in­vest­ment re­mains cru­cial for the New Zealand in­dus­try.’’

The ship­ment prin­ci­pally con­sisted of thor­ough­breds, with a hand­ful of stan­dard­breds also trav­el­ling to the north­ern part of China, where they will be based in the ru­ral area of Horqin.

‘‘It was very pos­i­tive to see rep­re­sen­ta­tives from China here buy- ing thor­ough­breds,’’ Mata­mata’s Rich Hill Stud’s John Thomp­son said.

‘‘ Their in­vest­ment will help push up the bot­tom-line re­turn for breed­ers which ul­ti­mately helps the lo­cal econ­omy as all breed­ers tend to put their fi­nan­cial re­turns back into the in­dus­try.’’

New Zealand’s free trade agree­ment with China played an im­por­tant role in se­cur­ing this in­vest­ment for the in­dus­try and has cre­ated a plat­form for fur­ther trade in the fu­ture.

‘‘We were de­lighted to have the op­por­tu­nity of sell­ing a cou­ple of nicely-bred 2-year-olds,’’ Brighthill Farm’s Nick King said.

‘‘We feel that this is an ex­cit­ing and emerg­ing mar­ket and I look for­ward to fol­low­ing the horses we’ve sold with great in­ter­est. We think the strong and sound New Zealand- bred horse will suit China as its rac­ing and breed­ing in­dus­try grows and de­vel­ops.’’

Backed by SMC Cap­i­tal China, one of the long­est run­ning and most prom­i­nent pri­vate eq­uity and al­ter­na­tive as­set in­vest­ment firms in Asia, the In­ner Mon­go­lia Rider Horse In­dus­try Co is in­volved in all as­pects of the equine in­dus­try, in­clud­ing over­see­ing the Tushenyetu race­track, the largest fa­cil­ity of its kind in the north­ern re­gion of China – In­ner Mon­go­lia.

‘‘It’s a multi-faceted com­pany,’’ said chief ex­ec­u­tive Lang Lin.

‘‘We breed and raise young thor­ough­breds, in ad­di­tion to pro­duc­ing our own feed, trad­ing horses, mon­i­tor the train­ing of horses and ad­min­is­ter rac­ing in the re­gion as well as other eques­trian ac­tiv­i­ties.’’

He said the com­pany has sig­nif­i­cant in­vest­ment in pur­pose­built equine fa­cil­i­ties.

‘‘We have been most im­pressed with the blood­stock on of­fer in New Zealand and the scale of the in­dus­try and we look for­ward to de­vel­op­ing the re­la­tion­ship fur­ther.’’

Photo: NEW ZEALAND THOR­OUGH­BRED MAR­KET­ING

On their way: A horse waits to be loaded at Auck­land Air­port for trans­port to China.

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