The New Zealand-India relationship is at a pivotal point. After decades of desultory courting, the kiwi and the elephant, so very metaphorically apt, are clearly poised for a meaningful tango.
Leaders on both sides have always feted the more than a century old relationship between the two countries, one of them having famously described New Zealand and India as the bookends of Asia. But those warm fuzzies didn’t quite help speed up the glacial pace of growth in trade volumes across the past several decades.
Over the past few years, however, the intent and resolve in the governments of both countries to strengthen and grow the trade relationship has become increasingly palpable.
This has happened against the backdrop of a range of factors including the rapidly growing numbers of Indian immigrants in New Zealand, the Indian government’s outward-looking strategies, particularly in the Asia Pacific (Indo Pacific, in more recent parlance) and the scorching pace of India’s economic growth.
The past decade has seen the slumbering elephant break into an amble, even a jog. Some Kiwi businesses have been quick to jog alongside, with more seriously considering joining the hui, as they recognise similarities between the two peoples and their governance systems.
And then throw in some other commonalities like the English language, the love of cricket and the Kiwi No.8 wire attitude that perfectly translates as the Indian ‘jugaad’ – and we have the perfect recipe for a most delectably spicy curry.
The India New Zealand Business Council, in the thirty years of its existence, has had a ringside view of developments in the New Zealand-India relationship. It has helped facilitate and catalyse parleys between officials of both countries and hosted summits. The Council is excited as the relationship enters this meaningful new phase and is poised to do its bit to help power the growth of trade and investment between the two countries.
There is no gainsaying the power of communication in the building of successful, growing relationships. Kia Ora India hopes to be the platform to connect INZBC members and stakeholders in the New Zealand-India relationship to help craft the exciting new chapters of the unfolding story of the kiwi and the elephant.
We hope you enjoy this inaugural quarterly issue. We would love to hear your feedback and look forward to your editorial contributions.
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