Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern heads to the Big Apple for the big sale
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is back in the Beehive theatreette to give the post-cabinet press conference on Monday afternoon before flying to New York.
ANALYSIS: Head to the Big Apple for the big sale.
That’s what Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will do when she lands in New York on Tuesday. She was due to arrive just after midnight local time (4:00 p.m. NZT), and has a day of back-to-back events tomorrow.
The schedule is packed, the trade delegation is buzzing and the excitement is palpable among US-based New Zealand foreign affairs officials. This is how things work: meetings can turn into conversations, which can turn into business opportunities. That’s not why Ardern got into politics, but lending her international star power to these trips and business events shows NZ Inc is serious.
It is the Prime Minister’s first trip to the United States since the Covid-19 pandemic, and one to an important commercial market and crucial security partner. In a world where investment from China is likely to lose importance, connecting to American networks, capital and know-how is a key objective of the trip.
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There is also a very real feeling that after two years of isolation, New Zealand is out again and there is excitement around that. Just as seeing loved ones again after two long years will be exciting when the borders are fully open, for many companies – and in government – it will be an opportunity for colleagues and employees to meet and meet customers, facing face to face for the first time.
So when Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern begins her busy schedule – around 2 a.m. Wednesday morning NZ time – she will be exercising the full range of her political abilities, but primarily for one purpose: to sell New Zealand. Zeeland in the United States.
She will begin by meeting with travel and tourism editors from various US media, including Conde Nast Travel, The New York Times Travel and Forbes, among others.
Ardern will then attend an event hosted by Silverfern Farms, New Zealand’s largest livestock processor. This is a net zero carbon event for leading US journalists and industry people which again aims to boost the reputation of New Zealand’s clean and green primary products.
She will also lead the trade delegation to a meeting with BlackRock. It is the world’s largest investment fund headed by Larry Fink and has a staggering US$10 trillion (NZ$15.5 billion) in assets under management. The event will be hosted by U.S. Chamber of Commerce Vice President and Head of International Affairs Myron Brilliant. It should include representatives from many major US companies.
After that, the schedule will shift to a more political agenda as Ardern meets with United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. They are expected to discuss, among other things, the war in Ukraine and climate change.
Then she will disappear into a live television studio to record The Late Show with Stephen Colbert – her third appearance on the show.
The day really demonstrates the fate of a jobard prime minister. Do a bit of everything, all in the national interest. New Zealand is a country that depends on trade, tourism and foreign capital. The day in New York is mostly about increasing all three.