Science and Innovation and Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Paul Goldsmith will travel to China tonight to represent New Zealand at the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing.
“Attending the first Belt and Road Forum will allow us to add a distinctly New Zealand voice and perspective. New Zealand’s best interests lie in participating in international initiatives that have the potential to benefit our economy and society,” says Mr Goldsmith.
New Zealand’s participation in the Forum follows on from Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s successful visit to New Zealand in March, where he and Prime Minister Bill English witnessed the signing of a number of arrangements that reinforced the strength of the New Zealand-China bilateral relationship, including committing to working with China on its Belt and Road Initiative.
“We have a great record of advocating for open, rules-based systems that make trading, investment and people movements flow more easily,” Mr Goldsmith says.
Following the Forum, which runs from 14 to 15 May, Mr Goldsmith will undertake a series of meetings and events relating to his ministerial portfolios.
“China is an important research partner for New Zealand and the bilateral relationship between the two countries has continued to thrive in recent years, particularly with the signing of several major research partnership agreements in the last 12 months,” says Mr Goldsmith.
While in China Mr Goldsmith will also:Meet with the Minister of Science and Technology Wan Gang, and Minister of Education Chen Baosheng Open the University of Auckland’s Innovation Institute in Hangzhou Open of the Joint Institute between the University of Waikato and Zhejiang University City College Attend the 10th Anniversary event of the New Zealand Centre at Peking University.
Mr Goldsmith will return to New Zealand on 20 May.