Enthusiastic response to inaugural P2M in Solomons

Pacific Trade & Invest (PT&I) NZ took its successful Path to Market Programme to Solomon Islands last week. Trade Development Manager Ian Furlong and Head of Investment and Chief Operating Officer Manuel Valdez delivered the programme to some 20 participants in Honiara.

At the SICCI office in Honiara: L-R: Manuel Valdez, Vanessa Teutao, Advocacy Officer of SICCI, Neil Niua, Membership Officer, Ian Furlong, and Charles Persson, Business Analyst (Volunteer)
At the SICCI office in Honiara: L-R: Manuel Valdez, Vanessa Teutao, Advocacy Officer of SICCI, Neil Niua, Membership Officer, Ian Furlong, and Charles Persson, Business Analyst (Volunteer)

Path to Market (P2M) is PT&I’s export capability building programme that combines the range of export facilitation services and expertise provided by PT&I to help export ready and export capable businesses enter new export markets. The content of the workshops is specifically targeted at existing and new exporters giving further insights and overviews of getting products to market.

The programme is an extended business model that covers a series of methodical steps that are delivered in partnership by PT&I NZ and an Economic Development Agency in each country. In this instance, PT&I partnered with the Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) to deliver the workshops. This is the first time that the programme was held in the Solomon Islands.

The programme begins with workshops, which are essentially a practical assessment of export capability vis-à-vis requirements of the New Zealand market. In a six-step process, the workshops are followed up with building a strong strategic link to the local economic development partner; organising a sales mission to New Zealand; applying learnings from the sales mission; introducing exporters to prospective buyers and distributors in New Zealand; and feedback analyses, quantification of deals and follow up to B2B meetings.

“The feedback was positive,” Mr Valdez told Pacific Periscope. “The breakout sessions and the development of the elevator pitch for each participant’s respective organisation saw a lot of enthusiastic activity.”

Most of the participants came from an agribusiness background, especially cocoa, coconut farmers and exporters, timber farmers and exporters and makers of handicraft and seashells products, Mr Valdez said.

The PT&I team also held stakeholder meetings with SICCI and private sector organisations in Honiara. Of their meeting at SICCI, Mr Valdez said, “This was the best opportunity to build a strong relationship with the Chamber to get investment projects in Solomon Islands and promote them to serious potential New Zealand investors.”

The purpose of these meetings is to provide market and investment information effectively as well as to make known PT&I’s services; establish a long-term relationship with our investment partners; to tap Economic Development Agencies (EDAs) to give us regular investment information to help us facilitate investment effectively and efficiently, he added.

For more information email Head of Investment and Chief Operating Officer Manuel Valdez at manuel.v@pacifictradeinvest.co.nz

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