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Board helping NZ companies in China resigns

Friday 24th June 2011

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Members of a private sector board helping New Zealand companies expand into China have all resigned, saying NZ Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) was undermining their work.

The private China Beachhead Advisory Board was chaired by expatriate New Zealander David Mahon, a banker who has worked in China for 26 years.

The board was helping 12 New Zealand companies when it resigned in a meeting at the New Zealand embassy in Beijing, The New Zealand Herald reported.

Mahon told the Herald it had become clear to the members of the board that they were an unwanted programme by NZTE in China.

NZTE had not always made available full information and there had been a lack of transparency, he said.

NZTE chief executive Peter Chrisp returned yesterday from China. He said there had been "a couple of years of operating tensions between the advisory board and NZTE".

"So it really came to a head this week and they resigned," Chrisp said.

The board members had goodwill for this country and had pledged to continue to help New Zealand companies.



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