The Cook Islands’ Business Trade & Investment Board (BTIB) is leading a delegation of two exporting companies from the small South Pacific Island country to this weekend’s Pasifika Business Market at the Pasifika Festival.“We are very excited to bring over Kora Pearls and Te Tika to the Pasifika Business Market,” Mona Taio, BTIB Trade & Marketing Officer told Pacific Periscope. “We are hoping to learn new things and open more doors for the Cook Islands.”

The delegation is participating in the Pasifika Business Market as part of PTI’s Path to Market, a seven-stage capacity building programme to better equip Pacific Island companies find markets for their products in New Zealand.

PTI NZ delivers the programme in the island nations partnering with the lead Economic Development Agency (EDA). BTIB is PTI NZ’s in-country partner in the Cook Islands.

Ms Taio said the delegation was hoping to get leads and potential distributors. “Both companies are hoping to meet with potential distributors in Auckland that can market their products,” she said.

BTIB’s Mona Taio will be at the Pasifika Business Market in Auckland.

“It’s very exciting for our companies to be joining up with PTI NZ and we are honoured to be given this opportunity, we are hoping to learn new things on the way and given that this is the first year to launch the Pacific Business Market at Pasifika, we are proud to be a part of the first year,” she added.

Ms Taio is keen to tell Kiwis about the Cook Islands “and what we sell and what services we provide!”

In 2017, PTI NZ partnered with the BTIB to deliver an internship programme in New Zealand with the aim of developing a better understanding for the New Zealand market for exports from the Cook Islands. As part of this programme, Ms Taio worked with the PTI NZ team for a period of two weeks, which coincided with PTI’s participation at the New Zealand Spring Gift and Homeware Fair 2017.

Ms Taio then said being at the Gift Fair and site visits to retail shops and importers gave her a better understanding of the New Zealand market, export requirements and product packaging and labelling.

“I think working closely with PTI we will be able to achieve some of our goals of export readiness, raising awareness of our products and partnerships with other agencies will be something to look forward to.”

She will certainly be looking forward to it as she leads the Cook Islands delegation to the Pasifika Business Market at Western Springs in Auckland this weekend.

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