Metals Industry Conferences : Metals NZ

By: Metals Nz  05-Apr-2012
Keywords: Metals

"Driving Productivity and Innovation"

14th-15th April in Wellington 

Many New Zealanders don't know it but the country's metals engineering industry is a big one. The GDP contribution of basic metal product manufacturing alone was around $2.6 billion annually based on the latest figures available, from 2007.  The other contributions of our industry are added into other product groups such as in agriculture, food processing and machinery and equipment manufacture and are hard to establish but indicate GDP contributions of well over $10 billion.  In addition, the industry as a whole employs 26,000 New Zealanders and in 2010, we exported metals-based manufactured product worth $2.3 billion – or 5.5% of New Zealand’s total exports. Now this big yet unrecognised industry has a big voice in the form of the Metals New Zealand association - an alliance of industry sector groups that covers and represents the diverse fields of metals based engineering.

Metals New Zealand was incorporated in December of last year and already has the support of the following member-based organisations: Casting Technology New Zealand (CTNZ), the Galvanising Association of New Zealand (GANZ),HERA, Light Alloy Manufacturing New Zeland (LAM-NZ), Metal Roofing Manufacturers (MRM), the National Association of Steel-framed Housing (NASH), the New Zealand Stainless Steel Development Association (NZSSDA), Steel Construction New Zealand (SCNZ) and the Titanium Industry Development Association (TIDA). In the corporate space, there is New Zealand Steel, One Steel, and SAFE on board as fee paying Ordinary Corporate Members and who have an interest in setting the direction of the organisation. Additionally seven Affiliate Corporate Members signed up at the Inaugural General Meeting in December.

The first Metals New Zealand Industry Conference held last month on the 14th of April was the official launch of the organisation and was officiated by the Hon David Carter, Minister for Economic Development. The Minister was treated to a spectacular launch video which showcased the industry and informed the Minister of the industry's contributions to the country's GDP.

"It is your ability to earn those export dollars that enables New Zealand to respond to challenges and and deliver a good standard of living for its people," said the Minister. "Your sector is extraordinarily diverse; you reach different product markets, you depend on different kinds of skills, and you face different barriers and constraints. The sector is already an important economic player, with these firms employing seven percent of New Zealand workers, and contributing ten percent of our exports."

In her welcoming address, the Mayor of Wellington Celia Wade-Brown pointed out how important our industry is to the Wellington region. She highlighted recent significant structural steel projects such as the Wellington Airport’s ‘The Rock” or the new multipurpose sports arena. The theme of industry importance and the need to advocate for this industry was continued by the Chairman of Metals New Zealand Noel Davies in his launch speech of Metals New Zealand.

The Minister for Economic Development Hon David Carter too echoed the industry’s importance in his opening address. His full speech can be viewed at
The strategic link between New Zealand’s prosperity and the industry’s performance requirements was outlined in Dr Rick Boven’s keynote address. His explanation of New Zealand’s relatively poor economic performance and the practical advice given to our industry leaders to lift our performance was clear and en- couraging.

The concluding presentation in the Opening Ceremony came from Simon Linge, the President of New Zealand Steel representing the key sponsor of the Conference. Simon, who spent several years in China and Malaysia, gave an insider's view into China's internal economic development where as a result of the huge local demand the economy of scale inevitable meant cost-effective production of goods and services leading to increased exports. However, the key message was not to get bogged down in the export thread but to focus on the huge opportunities offered to the industry in niche markets and export where the industry is naturally competitive.

We are very grateful to all our Conference sponsors and acknowledge their generous support to enable us to run such a conference at a time where the recession forces most of us to tighten the belt. The conference organising committee and the sponsors are looking forward to see you all there.

Dr Wolfgang Scholz
HERA Director and Secretary of Metals New Zealand
Chairman Conference Organising Committee

View the Metals NZ launch video:

The information in this article was current at 27 Mar 2012

Keywords: Metals

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Programme : Metals NZ

Steel Construction New Zealand SCNZ follows on with a 90 minutes workshop introduced in the Opening Function by Tony Smale and then has a second structural steel fabrication specific workshop by Australian fabrication technology guru Peter Farley.