On October 15th, 2019, the China Development Institute,Scion and the New Zealand China Council jointly held the China-New Zealand Think Tanks Seminar in New Zealand. The participating experts and scholars from China and other countries discussed the new opportunities for cooperation between the two countries in such areas as economy and trade, sustainable development, and new technology under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Date: October 15, 2019
Venue: Scion, Rotorua, New Zealand
Host: CDI, Scion and the New Zealand China Council
Theme: China-New Zealand Cooperation on Belt and Road Initiative: Innovation and Breakthroughs
09:30-10:00 Welcome Remarks
10:00-10:30 Tanira Kingi
The Māori economy
10:30-11:00 GUO Wanda, Executive Vice President, CDI
A New Prospect of China-New Zealand Economic and Trade Cooperation
11:00-11:30 HU Zhenyu, Director, Department of Sustainable Development and Blue Economy Research, CDI
Sustainable development practice of government, corporation, institute and NGO
11:30-12:00 CAO Zhongxiong, Executive Director, Department of New Economy Research, CDI
Transformation of and Challenge for Chinese Hi-tech Industrial Policies
12:00-13:00 Working Lunch
13:00-13:30 Florian Graichen
The New Zealand Bioeconomy
Exploring the new mechanism of economic and trade cooperationbetweenChina and New Zealand
There isroom for growth in inter-industry trade between the two countries
China and New Zealand have been developing differentiated and complementary products, and the size of trade between the two countries has been on a continuous rise. New Zealand's exports to China are mainly food- and wood-based primary products, while China's exports to New Zealand are mostly capital and tech-intensive products. Take the import of logs and lumber as an example.Asthe process of urbanisation advances in China, about 200-300 million people will come to work and live in cities in the next 20-30 years. Such a process will bring greater demand for housing, furniture and in turn logs and lumber. New Zealand, as a sparsely populated country,suffers from the inadequate communications infrastructure and the insufficient development of electromechanical processing and manufacturing.Faced with a rapidly developing information age, the country urgentlyneeds the investment to upgrade its communications infrastructure andmodernise its industries and people's life. These factors mean that New Zealand needs to import a large number of electronic and electromechanical products from China. In 2018, New Zealand imported 9.58 billion US dollars worth of electromechanical products, of which 36.7 percent came from the Chinese market.
The two countries should promote trade facilitation and maintain steady and sustainable development of bilateral trade
Since the Belt and Road construction involveslarge flows of people and materials, and New Zealand is leading the world in the field of biosafety, the two countries can carry out cooperation in biosafety protection and testing as trade partners under the BRI framework. In facilitating the flow of goods, the BRI involves not only the material construction of infrastructure but also the technical upgrading of customs clearance facilities. The two countries can increase cooperation in areas such as the Joint Electronic Verification (JEV) system, mutual authentication arrangements and supply chain management. Meanwhile, the two countries can consider jointly establishing a supply chain hub under the Belt and Road network to build a high-quality supply chain system and reduce operating costs.
The two countries should collaborate in buildinga “Southern Link”
China is currently the second largest trading partner of South America, butthe spatial distance and aircraft range are restricting the flows of people and goods between the two. New Zealand,located in the heart of the South Pacific, can act as a vital and natural aviation hub and midway junction between China and South America to provide convenient mobility for passenger transport and multimodal freight transport. New Zealand is leading the world in the fields of customs facilitation and supply chain linkage. A regional hub in New Zealand will provide exporters with a wider choice of trade routes and lower their logistics costs.The flows of goods will drive the development of "southern link" and the multilateral trade among China, New Zealandand South American countries, bringing new growth points to allof them. In addition, treating South America as a third-party market, China and New Zealand can carry out pragmatic cooperation.They can leveragethe advantages of their complementaryindustries and pursue innovative modelsof cooperation. In this way, they can achieve a win-win situation while serving the development needs of South American countries.
Promoting China-New Zealand industrial cooperation in multiple dimensions
Enhancing cooperation in upgrading primary industries will bring new breakthroughs to the industrial development outlook of the two countries
New Zealand's exports are of a relatively monotonous mix and mainly resource-based products. The low-value-added primary industriescan make only a limited contributionto economic development but have a negative impact on the environment. New Zealand urgently needs to upgrade its traditional primary industriesto shift to the upper end of the value chain. However, the country does not have advanced modern industries. Its existing infrastructure and production equipment cannot meet the demand for increasing added value,and the government is making relatively inadequate investment in infrastructure. China has a comparative advantage in light industrial manufacturing and agricultural product processing,which provides a valuable reference for New Zealand in terms of production, manufacturing, supply system, online and offline marketing systems. As New Zealand shifts from primary industries to processing and manufacturing, the two countries should enhance cooperation in infrastructure and encourage Chinese companies to invest and set up plants in New Zealand.This will benefit New Zealand in its industrial upgrade,and bring new economic growth points to local communities while providing channels for Chinese capital to "go abroad" and for Chinesecompanies to "go out".
The two countries should deepen cooperation in high-tech industries and increase exchanges of personnel in the current complicated international context
In the Sino-US trade frictions, the United States has mainly increased tariffs on Chinese electronic information and biopharmaceutical products and stepped up control overexports of parts and technologiesto China. New Zealand is quickly building the world's healthiest technology ecosystems.It is active in technological innovation, and its research strengths in biotech, forestry technology and artificial intelligence are leading the world. New Zealand can fully tap into its advantages in high and new technology and act as an alternative market for Chineseexports as well as an alternative technology provider to China.In this way, it can further strengthen cooperation and exchanges with China in scientific and technological innovation while diversifying its own exports.
The two countries can cooperate in buildingthe network and mechanism for exchanges of scientific research personnel and join hands insetting up R&D centres and overseas innovation centres. Compared with other developing countries, China now has a lower conversion rate of scientific research results,which has been around 10 percent for a long time. The New Zealand government has been encouraging companies to invest in scientific research.This has promotedthe transfer of scientific achievements to industries and increased the contribution of science and technology to economic growth.
The two countries should explore the opportunities for cooperation in green energy, maritime economy and sustainable development
Pacific island countries can play an important role in the Belt and Road Initiative, especially the construction of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. However, due to their relatively monotonous industries and fragile economies, these countries rely too much on natural resources for their development. In cooperation with Pacific island countries, China and New Zealand should not just focus on infrastructure and connectivity, but they should also tap into their advantages in high and new technology and sustainable development to help these countries cope with climate change and improve their economic resilience.