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NZTech Inform – celebrating local tech!

We are still buzzing from last week’s Tech21 Summit at the Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau, with nearly 1500 students and 200 teachers able to imagine their future in tech. It was great to be able to help the Ministry of Education host Tech21 and connect tech firms with learners. The aim was simple – to spark inspiration for students in years 7–10.    

From the moment rapper Kings took the stage, everyone knew the day was going to be extra special. The impressive speaker line up resonated with the audience by sharing their stories. Plus, there were drones, robots, rockets, AR/VR and every kind of tech imaginable!  

Throughout the day, students explored the Imagine Zone where they were able to touch, feel and see hi-tech first hand.  Later that evening, I was contacted by a journalist whose son had been to the Tech21 Summit. His son came home stoked and said he had never really been into tech before, but he was inspired.    

Watch the three minute highlights video here. Also, the keynotes and tech talks are available to view on-demand.  Meanwhile, the Tech21 Summit was just one of hundreds of events that were running during Techweek2021. Here are just a few of the daily highlights and if you missed a Techweek TV programme, you can catch up on-demand.

On Friday evening, I joined the celebrations at the Hi-Tech Awards. As finalists in the Best Contribution to the New Zealand Tech Sector category, we knew the night was going to be exceptional. In his opening speech, the Hi-Tech Trust’s Chair David Downs summed up the importance of this year’s awards and how ultimately, success for the sector is success for New Zealand.

When we were announced as winners, we lived up to our name as the voice of the tech sector! I am incredibly proud of everyone who has been part of our journey. I would like to acknowledge our board (both past and present), our hard working team and our members, who fund us as a not-for-profit organisation. Congratulations to all the finalists and winners at the 2021 New Zealand Hi-Tech Awards.

Immigration issues? On Friday evening, many people approached me about their challenges in accessing talent.  According to Immigration New Zealand there should not be any roadblocks in IT professionals and tech people entering New Zealand. The pathway to use is Other Critical Worker, applying for a 12 month or longer visa, paying more than $106k and explaining why a local can’t do the job. If you are having any issues, please email me further details so we help resolve it. Immigration New Zealand would like to ensure they are actively supporting the tech sector’s growth.

Ngā mihi

Graeme Muller

PS:  What makes exporting challenging for you? Please share your views in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) quick survey.

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