The Prime Minister will leverage New Zealand’s response to Covid-19 overseas to try to attract tourists from Singapore and Japan.
Jacinda Ardern leaves tomorrow for a six-day trip to Asia – her first international trade mission in more than two years.
She will meet the Singaporean Lee Hsien Loong – and, for the first time, the Japanese Fumio Kishida.
Japan and Singapore are already the country’s fourth and fifth largest trading partners and trade will feature prominently in Ardern’s discussions with leaders of those countries.
Much of the trip will be spent promoting tourism ahead of the border reopening next month, she said.
Ardern said other countries have seen New Zealand’s values on display during the pandemic.
In Singapore, Ardern will also address Singaporean entrepreneurs and business leaders at a gala dinner in New Zealand.
She will visit one of Singapore’s major ports to discuss ways to future-proof our supply chain and engage with aviation industry leaders to make aviation more sustainable, as well as attend cultural events .
In Japan, Ardern will meet Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to discuss global and regional challenges.
She will address the Japan-New Zealand Business Council and meet leading business and industry leaders in sectors such as clean energy and technology.
“I will highlight New Zealand’s reopening for tourism and education, as well as supporting our businesses as they rebuild and develop relationships with partners and customers in these two important markets,” Ardern said. when the trip is first announced.
“It’s been just over two years since Covid-19 hit the shores of New Zealand, prompting us to close borders to protect lives and livelihoods. Now we must continue to reconnect with the world and j ‘m looking forward to supporting our businesses in various sectors, and seeing my political counterparts in person.”
Ardern said she would seek advice from the leaders of Singapore and Japan on Pacific security.
A draft security pact between China and the Solomon Islands alarmed New Zealand when it was leaked last month.
“We are in an increasingly contested region, which puts pressure on the region; some of the ways we can ensure the resilience of our region are actually some of the economic relationships that also exist in our part of the world,” Arden said.
The Prime Minister is also expected to visit Australia, the United States and Europe later this year.