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Source: Auckland Tourism, Events & Economic Development (ATEED)

A delegation of business and civic leaders from Australia’s leading regional economy and most exciting new metropolitan area will visit Auckland this week to explore opportunities in trade, tourism and collaboration. 

The delegation will mark the introduction in late 2018 of direct air flights between Newcastle Airport and Auckland Airport. Newcastle is about 150 kilometres north of Sydney on the Australian east coast and is the regional capital of the Hunter, which encompasses 10 local council areas. 

Hunter Business Chamber CEO Bob Hawes said the proximity and diversity of the Hunter region offered great opportunities to develop mutually beneficial relationships with business partners in Auckland.

“There are many similarities in the economic profiles of our regions that potentially provide good synergy for business, as well as parallels in our journeys of post-industrial revitalisation, diversification and urban renewal,” he said.

The once-industrial city of Newcastle has undergone a major transformation over the past decade that has delivered a modern city centre complementing its enviable coastal location. Cranes in the sky are reshaping the CBD, the streets are buzzing with cosmopolitan cafes, bars and restaurants, and a new light rail service is set to begin operating within weeks. 

Newcastle Airport CEO Peter Cock said the trip would promote the significant business and economic benefits provided by the direct flights between Newcastle and New Zealand.

“Our new international service has provided the people of Auckland with a link to visit family and friends whilst enjoying all that our region has to offer, from a burgeoning cultural city, to the pristine beaches of Port Stephens and some Australia’s oldest wineries in the Hunter Valley, all within a 45-minute drive from Newcastle Airport,” Mr Cock said. 

“This business trip will develop important relationships with the aim to strengthen demand and to grow this route.”

Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED) General Manager Economic Development, Pam Ford welcomes the chance to forge new business relationships between the two regions. 

“Given Auckland’s relative proximity to the Newcastle area, Australia’s importance to us as a tourism and trade market, and the opportunity that these direct seasonal flights will bring, this is a welcome opportunity to explore business, investment and tourism collaborations. Both Auckland and the Newcastle area are undertaking transformational urban and waterfront projects and we look forward to sharing information as these progress.”

The Newcastle-Hunter delegation includes the Newcastle Lord Mayor, Councillor Nuatali Nelmes, and the Mayor of neighbouring Port Stephens, Councillor Ryan Palmer. It also includes the CEOs of Newcastle Airport and Port of Newcastle, the global trade and tourism gateways for the Hunter and key drivers of the regional economy.

The delegation will participate in a forum with business leaders from Auckland at GridAKL today (Monday 4 February). 
Members of the media are welcome to attend. 


For more information:
Amy De Lore, Hunter Business Chamber, +61 419 218 830