Exporting challenges and responses of New Zealand firms

Authors

Brian Bull

Penny Mok

Stella Sim

Date published

21 April 2021

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This paper describes the challenges New Zealand exporters faced from January 2015 to February 2020. It also explores what the firms and NZTE did to respond to these challenges.

This research revealed five major challenges for New Zealand exporters: building brand awareness; finding the right partners and channels (ie, intermediaries, such as retailers and distributors); strong overseas competition; understanding how destination markets differed from New Zealand markets and each other; and determining the right export pricing strategy and product-related costs to remain competitive and profitable.

NZTE analysed its interactions with more than 500 firms over a five-year period to identify these barriers to success. All of these challenges have been heightened during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly brand awareness and developing the right business connections, given there is no international travel.

This commissioned report is one of a number of research inputs into the Commission's inquiry into maximising the economic contribution of New Zealand’s frontier firms.  

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