I am writing this from Sydney where I am participating in a NZCID led Austrade hosted delegation in partnership with NZTE.
The purpose of the visit to both Sydney and Melbourne is to look at developments in Australia that may apply to the rebuild in Christchurch. It is all about learning more in the area of best practice in infrastructure and urban development. We are seeking to get closer to Australian representatives in these fields, so that we can learn more about applying scale to the Christchurch rebuild. Contrary to some views, there is no attempt to resist Australian participation in the rebuild. The reality is that it is hard to break into Christchurch from a cold start. In fact there are many Australian companies working collaboratively with Christchurch based companies to build the scale required for a timely recreation of our city. I hope my visit will assist that process as well as giving me good insight into the critical issues associated with an economic development programme the size of the one we are dealing with.
This is all part fostering healthy trans-Tasman relations, and building collegiality between public and private sector delegates and our Australian equivalents.