Wednesday, 27 March 2013

CDC is about to release its Christchurch Economic Development Strategy

The Canterbury Development Corporation, the economic development agency of the Christchurch City Council is about to release its Christchurch Economic Development Strategy. This is a well thought out and significant piece of work. It identifies the key economic drivers of our future and the sort of growth we can expect if we get things right. It also indicates where we might end up if we get things wrong! The  strategy is about more than money. It is about our community, social issues and getting our environment right. At CECC we have been close to this plan as it has been developed and we intend to stay close to it as it is realized. The plan depends on all us for its delivery. We will all need to support it and be actively engaged.  Watch out for it's release post Easter and in the meantime enjoy a well deserved Easter break!

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

There is a stirring in the suburbs

It is so good to see the geotech work gathering momentum around the city. This, combined with increasing activity from insurance companies accelerating their settlement activity, is a sign of positive resolution to the long list of seriously damaged houses and the TC3 land issues. The flow-on effect of this area of the city’s rebuild will be very significant and we expect this to start to percolate through our regional economy in the first two quarters of this year. To date we have already seen a billion dollars paid out to contractors on the less seriously damaged homes with 30,000 out of 100,000 houses with minor damage repaired. Our regional economy is currently growing at 7.5%. Once the work really cranks up on the seriously damaged houses in Christchurch we had all better hold on to our seat belts. It will be a heady ride with positive economic activity locked in for years to come. And then there is the commercial rebuild !!!!

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Scale of the rebuild will require firms to collaborate

The earthquakes were huge, the impact on Christchurch and the rest of the country was huge. And the task of rebuilding Christchurch is greater still.

The numbers are mind-boggling. The damage is estimated to have cost, just in money terms, between $30 and $40 billion. It is predicted that it will take until 2017 to rebuild or replace the 45,000 homes that were destroyed or damaged. And to rebuild the city itself will take about 20 years.

Canterbury can’t do it on its own. There is simply not the workforce to do this.

Given that the policy people estimate between 10,000 and 15,000 extra trades people are going to be needed, given that we don’t have any accommodation in the city, given that we are already pouring more cubic meters of concrete that they are in greater Auckland – it all adds up to the fact that it’s absolutely inevitable that we’re going to have to harness resources from wherever we can in the rebuild. 

It’s already happening informally – companies in Christchurch are forming collaborative relationships with others across the country. And it isn’t just in the construction area.

As an example, a law firm that has formed a collaborative relationship with one based in Auckland.
The Auckland based firm is doing a lot of work assisting the local one to deal with the scale of resource consent process and other legal inquiries that are building all the time

There are groups in Christchurch using the internet to bring those looking for assistance and those keen to provide it together. The WellCan Forum will take the concept further.

It is about how we harness the capabilities of regional economies right across New Zealand to assist us in the rebuild. That’s good for those regional economies, because it keeps regional activity where it is and it keeps people where they are.

That means that componentry and other material can be sent to Christchurch in a finished or semi-finished basis, which will accelerate the rebuild.

Every home that can be built faster means one family is more secure sooner.

It’s not just homes of course. The Christchurch Central Development Unit has make real progress towards the vision of its’ Blueprint Plan. The four priority anchor projects are moving ahead steadily and the central city area is starting to repopulate, with the re-opening of Victoria Square and the New Ibis Hotel now in business.

The rebuild is the biggest economic stimulus New Zealand has ever had.  And it is going to require a shift in the business paradigm. There are going to have to be new ways of doing business because of the scale. And collaborative relationships are about building scale.

How can you get involved?
Collaborate Canterbury will help your business form positive collaborations.
Register at the Marketplace and find companines with the people, skills and resources you need to build scale and capability.