Alan Pollard and Carmen Vicelich, Chief Executives of respectively NZ Apples and Pears Inc and Valocity Limited, said that while India offers immense commercial and industrial opportunities, New Zealand businesses and investors should know the ways and means of unlocking the immense potential.
The two were the main speakers at New Zealand-India Dialogue Series conducted regularly by the Auckland based New Zealand India Trade Alliance (NZITA), the first of which for the New Year was held at the Northern Club in Central Auckland on February 4, 2020.
“Trade with India should be considered as a Strategic Partnership, not just a transaction and the approach should be one of cooperation and collaboration,” Pollard said. He said that New Zealanders should be able and be ready to provide technical knowhow and skills transfer to their Indian counterparts. Exchange Programmes and discussions on evolving issues concerning Intellectual Property should also be a part of the engagement.
Citing the example of his own company, Pollard said that NZ Apples and Pears Inc has been involved with the development of Apple cultivation in the Northern Indian State of Himachal Pradesh over the past 40 years.
Indian apple industry
“In India, apples are grown only in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Jammu & Kashmir. The sector in Himachal Pradesh needs rejuvenation and we are offering our expertise and help under a World Bank funded project,” Pollard said. New Zealand is considered as the Number 1 in apple production in the world, rated thus because of healthy orchard practices and innovation. These have helped in higher yield per hectare compared to other countries.
“Doing business with India can be as challenging and daunting as some of the terrains where apples are grown. The greatest challenge that we face is the high tariff, which is about 50%,” he said.