Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) NZ is working in association with Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), an organisation of the Auckland Council, to create the Pacific Hub that will host exporting companies from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Samoa, Tonga, the Cook Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and Palau.
Though PTI has hosted Pacific companies at Pasifika since 2016, stalls of PTI-hosted companies tended to be scattered across the ‘villages’ throughout the sprawling Western Springs property.
In this, the third year of participation, it is the first time that a branded and designated village-style area has been earmarked separately to host the Pacific Hub under the PTI NZ banner. It will be located next to the biggest ‘village’ at Pasifika – Samoa, which is next to the Western Springs Stadium. This location stands out distinctively amid the hustle and bustle of what is recognised as the world’s biggest Polynesian festivals which runs on 24-25 March.
The purpose of the Pacific Business Hub is to engage Pacific Island based businesses with local communities. Having the businesses gathered in one area allows the businesses to test their products to a wide target audience.
As well as individual stalls for each of the companies, the Pacific Hub will host a 6m square stage with a programme of entertainment and a chill out area. The stage could also be used for cooking demonstrations or allow the different companies an opportunity to promote their products.
The participation of these exporting companies is part of The PTI NZ Path to Market programme, which is a multi-step initiative to help introduce Pacific Island based businesses to the New Zealand market.
PTI NZ works with the Economic Development Agencies such as the Chambers of Commerce in each Pacific country to organise Path to Market programmes and identify potential exporters who are ready to move to the next stage. The programme includes a Gap Analysis, a workshop, site visits and one on one business meetings in the days after Pasifika Festival.
Most of the country delegations that will participate at the Pacific Hub will be accompanied by officials of their respective economic development organisations (EDA). The presence of these officials is important because they have the regulatory and other information about doing business in their countries so that visiting businesspeople meeting with the participating exporters can readily obtain the information they might need.
The EDAs that PTI works with are the Ministry of Commerce, Consumer, Trade, Innovation and Labour of Tonga, the Fiji Export Council, Investment Promotion Authority (Papua New Guinea), Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Small Business Development Centre (Palau), Office of Commerce and Investment (RMI), BUSINESS Trade and Investment Board in the Cook Islands and Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters (SAME), among others.
Pacific Periscope will run detailed coverage of each of the delegations and profile the participating companies, which are alumni of the PTI Path to Market programme over the next few weeks in the run up to Pasifika.