China Business Summit: 2018

Eyes wide open

The fourth iteration of this essential summit explored and tackled the big issues as the ties between New Zealand and China became deeper than ever before.

The Summit attracted a strong array of insightful speakers and set an agenda for discussion on the vital opportunities, challenges, and on-going changes in the China market.

The Prime Minister, Rt Hon. Jacinda Ardern gave the opening keynote address at the Summit.


  • 7.30AM – 8.00AM



  • 7.55AM

Call to Order: MC Tim McCready, Director of Innovation, NZ INC.


  • 8.00AM – 8.40AM

Opening Session

  • Welcome: Summit Co-chair: Fran O’Sullivan, Managing Director, NZ INC.
  • Q&A: Fran O’Sullivan
  • Vote of Thanks: Summit Co-chair: Michael Barnett, Chief Executive, Auckland Regional Chamber of Commerce


  • 8.45 AM – 9.30AM

Keynote Address: HON DAVID PARKER, Minister of Trade and Export Growth NZ businesses face a challenging time as the trade war between the United States and China gathers pace. Minister Parker will share the Labour Government’s approach to navigating this period, canvas the upgrade of the free trade agreement  between China and New Zealand and changes to the foreign investment regime. Note: There will be a Q&A session after Mr Parker’s speech.


  • 9.30AM – 9.40AM

Her Excellency Madam WU XI, Chinese Ambassador to New Zealand


  • 9.40AM – 10.30AM

Hear from two leading commentators on the impact of changes in the rapidly developing Chinese political and economic landscape. China’s economic choices are critically important for the prosperity of the world at large, including of course New Zealand — where many export-facing businesses have placed many if not most of their eggs in the China growth basket. Our two China-based commentators explore the New Era in China; the business environment for NZ firms trading and investing in China and the potential fall out from the Game of Thrones between the United States and China.

  • Chair: Fran O’Sullivan
  • Raymond Yeung: Chief Economist, ANZ Greater China
  • Rowan Callick: China-focused author and columnist


  • 10.30AM – 11.00AM

Morning tea & networking


  • 11.00AM – 12.00NOON

The New Zealand political landscape: What does it mean for business, trade and investment with China? This session will debate what the new NZ landscape means for firms doing business with China. What strategies should companies employ as NZ ‘dances with the elephants of global trade’? What are the opportunities associated with the upgrade of the bilateral China-NZ FTA? Does the debate over the extent of China’s soft power which has engaged Australia and the United States have the potential to spill over to New Zealand. How bilateral investment between China and NZ developed since the bilateral free trade agreement was signed 10 years ago.

  • Chair:  Fran O’Sullivan, Managing Director, NZ INC.
  • Charles Finny, Partner, Saunders Unsworth (former NZ trade negotiator)
  • Todd McClay, National spokesperson on foreign affairs and trade
  • Stephen Jacobi, Executive Director NZ China Council
  • Pip McLachlan, Director Engagement and Research, Asia New Zealand Foundation
  • Ivan Kinsella, Special Adviser (China) to NZTE


  • 12.00PM – 1PM

Cross Border Investment and Trade: Case studies from New Zealand and Chinese path-finders. We look at the on-the- ground realities for significant New Zealand and Chinese companies investing and trading in each others’ markets.

  • Chair: Paul Goodwin, Managing Director, Institutional NZ – ANZ
  • David Courtney, Chief Growers and Alliances Officer, Zespri
  • David W. Song, Managing Director, Yashili New Zealand Dairy
  • Keith Turner, Chairman, Fisher & Paykel Appliances
  • Tom Nickels, Managing Director, Waste Management New Zealand


  • 1.00PM – 1.45PM

Lunch and Networking


  • 1.45PM – 2.30PM

Keynote Address: The rise of new retail.

  • MAGGIE ZHOU, Managing Director of Alibaba Group Australia & New Zealand

Maggie Zhou, Managing Director of Alibaba Group Australia & New Zealand, will discuss Alibaba’s strategy, the rise of new retail and the opportunities for New Zealand businesses in China. New Zealand has an enviable reputation as the source of many high-quality organic goods, ranging from dairy, meat, fruit and wine, to skincare and health supplements. Nowhere are these goods more popular than in China’s growing consumer market. With more than 400 New Zealand brands currently selling on Alibaba’s B2C platforms and Tmall Global, Maggie Zhou, Managing Director of Alibaba Group, Australia & New Zealand, will discuss the incredible opportunity for New Zealand businesses in China, (enabled by Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms) as well as how the roll out of Alibaba’s ‘Five Globals’ strategy will enable Alibaba Group to work more closely with New Zealand merchants and partners in the region to enable further success in China. Following Alibaba’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival in November – the largest and most anticipated online and mobile shopping festival in the world – Maggie will also discuss the rise of New Retail as Alibaba Group continues to pioneer changes to the way consumers in China shop. Specifically, Maggie will discuss the introduction of new technologies to the traditional retail experience, where customers explore ‘smart stores’ and make use of facial recognition technology and virtual/augmented reality.

  • Chair: Michael Barnett, CEO, Auckland Regional Chamber of Commerce


  • 2.30PM – 3.00PM

LUKAS PARAVICINI, Chief Operating Officer Global Consumer & Foodservice, Fonterra


  • 3.00PM – 3.15PM

Afternoon tea



Digital Innovation and Marketing: Lessons from the frontline on how NZ companies can leverage China’s rapidly developing market. Learn how China – the cradle of innovations such as print and fireworks – is being put to the test by companies such as Baidu, Tencent and Alibaba – world leaders in the field of digital innovation and artificial intelligence. Hear from New Zealand companies how they are embracing digital technologies to stay at the forefront in doing business with China in fields ranging from a prospective virtual airport terminal, to smart retail for NZ consumer goods and leveraging the rapidly growing Chinese tourism market.

  • Chair: Tim McCready, Director of Innovation, NZ INC.
  • Malcolm Johns, CEO, Christchurch International Airport
  • Gavin Yang, Managing Director, TradeMonster
  • Avi Golan, Chief Digital Officer, Air New Zealand


  • 3.15PM – 4.30PM: BREAKOUT STREAM B

Harnessing China’s growth and expertise China’s flagship initiative Belt and Road Initiative provides opportunities and the challenges for New Zealand companies to leverage China’s increasingly physical, economic, and financial connectivity with the world. Auckland’s massive population growth has also been met with a need to build infrastructure at a rate far greater than the city can currently sustain. Are there business opportunities available to leverage New Zealand’s links with China to finance and build large scale projects and catch-up on the infrastructure gap?

  • Chair: Michael Barnett, CEO, Auckland Chamber of Commerce
  • Colum Rice, Partner and Head of China Markets team, PwC NZ
  • Wee Li Cheong, Director Financial Institutions Group, Bank of China
  • John Dalzell, Managing Director, Silk Road Funds
  • Karen Hou, Chief Executive, ICBC New Zealand
  • Stephen Selwood, Chief Executive, Infrastructure New Zealand


  • 4.30PM – 5.15PM

Winners and War stories: Lessons from New Zealand SMEs that have successfully built business with China. NZ firms give us a taste of what is it like to “jump into the river” and forge successful business with China. What are the strategies panellists have employed? How did they make the right connections and partnerships, protect valuable IP, and overcome obstacles on the route to success?

  • Justin Hall, Chief Executive Officer, Smartfood
  • Simon Harding, Chief Executive Officer,  NZ Mint
  • Angela Buglass, Chief Executive Officer, Trilogy
  • Roy Dawson, Seafood Export Manager, Kono
  • Moderator: Mike Arand, China Business Development Advisor, NZ Trade & Enterprise


  • 5.15PM – 5.30PM

Summit close & prize draw


  • 5.30PM – 7.00PM

Networking drinks with Mayor of Auckland Phil Goff Mr Goff will be introduced by Nicholas Hill, CEO, Ateed.

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