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20 Mar 2024 • 4 min read

Leveraging Export NZ’s Insights for International Success

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International expansion requires careful planning and the right support. In this blog, we unpack the guidance provided by Joshua Tan of Export NZ, focusing on what truly matters for New Zealand SMEs aiming to grow beyond our shores. You'll learn about aligning your business strategy with the government's trade objectives, navigating the specific challenges of the 2024 market landscape, and making the most of Export NZ's advocacy and resources. We'll also discuss the importance of selecting the right market and adhering to international regulations. These insights can launch or broaden your international presence with confidence.

Aligning with Government Trade Objectives

For New Zealand businesses aiming to make their mark on the world stage, understanding and aligning with the government's trade objectives is crucial. The new government has laid out clear goals that can serve as a roadmap for your expansion efforts. These include ambitious targets like doubling the value of exports over the next decade, which signals a supportive environment for businesses ready to export.

Furthermore, the government has identified strategic trade relationships that need strengthening, with India, the Gulf States, and the Pacific alliance at the forefront. These partnerships could open up vast new markets for your products or services.

By aligning your business with these objectives, you're not only positioning yourself in line with where the country is headed but also potentially tapping into governmental support and initiatives designed to make these goals a reality.

Export NZ acts as a bridge between businesses and government policy, advocating for the needs and interests of exporters. Staying informed through Export NZ's updates means you're always aware of how changes in trade policy can affect your business and how to adapt your strategy accordingly. With 25% of New Zealand's GDP and jobs linked to the export sector, the significance of this alignment cannot be overstated.

“One of our key goals is to build a strong ecosystem here in New Zealand that supports each other. So that's service providers ourselves, other business councils, chambers of commerce, making sure that we all understand that the goal at the end of the day is to grow the New Zealand economy.”

Listen to the full interview

Challenges in 2024

The year 2024 presents a unique set of challenges for New Zealand firms looking to export. As outlined by Joshua Tan, three critical areas - capability, capacity, and cargo - are particularly pressing.

Capability refers to the know-how and skills necessary to compete on the global stage. Export NZ is responding with targeted programs designed to enhance the competencies of business leaders and their teams, ensuring they're well-equipped for international trade.

Capacity concerns the ability of businesses to scale and meet the demands of new markets. Export NZ supports growth by advocating for policies that bolster business development and by connecting companies with investment opportunities.

Cargo, or the logistics of shipping goods, has become more complex due to geopolitical issues and supply chain disruptions. Despite these challenges, Export NZ offers guidance on navigating the evolving landscape of global trade routes and optimising supply chains for cost and efficiency.

In confronting these challenges, it is crucial for businesses to stay informed and seek support when needed. Export NZ stands ready to assist with up-to-date information and strategic advice, helping firms mitigate risks and capitalise on opportunities in 2024's dynamic marketplace.

Leveraging Advocacy and Capability Resources

Export NZ's role extends beyond mere guidance; it's a potent advocate for the interests of local businesses on the global stage. The organisation provides a voice for SMEs, ensuring that the concerns and needs of exporters are heard in policy-making circles. By staying apolitical, Export NZ can candidly represent the business community's perspective, facilitating a more favourable trading environment.

The advocacy work is complemented by a wealth of capability resources. Export NZ understands that knowledge is power in international trade. To that end, they've developed programs and workshops that equip businesses with the necessary tools to thrive abroad. From understanding market nuances to navigating complex legal landscapes, these educational offerings are tailored to foster competencies that can make or break an overseas venture.

Accessibility to these resources is crucial, and Export NZ ensures that through their extensive network, businesses across New Zealand can tap into this repository of knowledge. Whether it's up-to-date market intelligence, strategic advice, or practical tips on export mechanics, Export NZ's resources are designed to enhance the international acumen of New Zealand's exporters. Engaging with these resources not only bolsters your business's capability but also aligns your strategic approach with the best global trade practices.

Strategic Market Selection and Regulation Compliance

Choosing the right market is a pivotal decision for New Zealand businesses eyeing international expansion. Export NZ highlights the need for thorough market research and a strategic approach when venturing overseas. The focus should be on markets where New Zealand products or services are in demand and where regulatory environments are navigable.

Compliance with international regulations is another cornerstone for successful market entry. The nuances of legal and tax obligations can vary widely from country to country, and even within regions of larger nations, such as the state-by-state differences in the USA. Export NZ advocates for a proactive approach to understanding these complex regulatory landscapes to avoid costly and time-consuming pitfalls.

To aid businesses in these critical areas, Export NZ provides access to up-to-date insights on market conditions and regulatory changes. They emphasise the importance of leveraging this intelligence to make informed decisions and establish a solid foundation for international trade.

The message from Export NZ is clear: strategic market selection and stringent adherence to regulations are non-negotiable for successful export ventures. Businesses that take the time to understand their target markets and comply with relevant laws position themselves for enduring success and sustainable growth in the global arena.

Engaging with Export NZ

For New Zealand SMEs aiming for the global stage, engaging with Export NZ is a great move. Membership offers a gateway to a range of benefits, from networking opportunities to customised support services.

Businesses can join Export NZ through one of four regional organisations. This local connection provides a direct link to national and international networks, invaluable for firms taking their first or next step in exporting. Members can tap into Export NZ’s wealth of experience, accessing tailored advice that caters to the unique challenges of international markets.

Export NZ facilitates a range of events that not only educate but also connect businesses with potential partners and experienced exporters. Their regular workshops and webinars are designed to keep companies abreast of the latest trends and changes in global trade.

Moreover, Export NZ's active social media presence, particularly on LinkedIn, and their informative monthly newsletter, serve as crucial platforms for staying updated on export-related news and opportunities.

“Export New Zealand does support exporters to meet these challenges. The capability, capacity in cargo, if I break it down, capability is something which is a big focus for us this year, ensuring that exporters have the skill set, the toolbox and the know-how to be able to export, efficiently and well.”

Leveraging the support and resources offered by Export NZ is essential for New Zealand SMEs aiming to expand into international markets. By aligning with government trade objectives, navigating the specific challenges of 2024, utilising advocacy and capability resources, strategically selecting markets, and complying with international regulations, businesses can significantly enhance their prospects for global success. Engaging with Export NZ not only provides valuable insights and support but also connects you to a network that champions the growth and resilience of New Zealand's export community. Take this step to elevate your business on the world stage.

Click here to find out more about Export NZ's work and upcoming events.

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