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30 June 2011
PM announces Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship

Prime Minister John Key announced today that Indian businessman and Member of Parliament Vijay Mallya will be the next recipient of the Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship.

Mr Key made the announcement in Mumbai while on a four day state visit to India.

The Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship is a tribute to the special contribution made by Sir Edmund Hillary to New Zealand’s bilateral relationships with India and Nepal.

Vijay Mallya follows Rahul Gandhi who was the recipient of the inaugural Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship in 2010.

Mr Key says, “Vijay Mallya is an outstanding businessman with a great affection for New Zealand. He is a worthy recipient of the Fellowship and will be a great asset in strengthening the longstanding and friendly ties between the two countries.”

Vijay Mallya is Chairman of United Breweries Group, a multinational conglomerate encompassing 60 companies, and head of Kingfisher Airlines. He is also an Independent MP in the Upper House.

Vijay Mallya owns the Bangalore IPL cricket team that Daniel Vettori played for this year, and owns the Formula One team “Force India’.

“I will be delighted to welcome Vijay Mallya to New Zealand as the Prime Minister’s Fellow,” says Mr Key.
 

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29 June 2011
Joint Statement on the State Visit of Prime Minister of New Zealand

The Prime Minister of New Zealand H.E. Mr John Key paid a state visit to India from 26-30 June at the invitation of the Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh. The New Zealand Prime Minister was accompanied by the Trade Minister Hon Tim Groser, M.P. Mr. Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi and a high level business delegation.

Commonwealth ties, shared democratic values, people-to-people and sporting links underpin the vibrant bilateral relationship between India and New Zealand. The two Prime Ministers acknowledged the strength of the ties and agreed there was great potential for further growth in the relationship. They welcomed the enhanced engagement across a range of trade and economic sectors, including science and innovation, education and defence.

Prime Minister Key thanked Prime Minister Singh for the support and sympathy extended by the Government of India to New Zealand, and especially to the residents of Christchurch, following the devastating earthquake on February 22 2011. The two Leaders affirmed the importance of cooperation on disaster preparedness and emergency response management systems, a shared area of focus for the two countries working together in regional forums such as the East Asia Summit.

The two Prime Ministers welcomed the increased trade and investment flows between India and New Zealand and noted the potential to expand bilateral trade significantly. The two Prime Ministers reiterated the commitment to early conclusion of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations, noting that the ongoing negotiations were proceeding well. Successful conclusion of a high quality and comprehensive FTA would provide the platform for stronger economic interaction to the benefit of both economies.

The two Prime Ministers acknowledged the complementary nature of the key exports from each country and noted the role that bilateral trade and sharing of expertise between them could play in ensuring food security for the future.

Building on existing film industry links, an Agreement on Audio-Visual Co-Productions was signed in the presence of the two Prime Ministers. This Agreement will allow both sides to encourage industry level cooperation, share creative talent, and support the vibrant film industry in both countries.

The two Prime Ministers announced a new Education Cooperation Initiative. This jointly-funded Initiative, worth NZ $ 1 million annually (i.e. around Rs 3.6 crores) to be shared equally by New Zealand and India, will promote partnerships in two key streams; higher education and research, and skills and vocational education. The Initiative will focus on areas such as academic and student exchanges, joint research activities, and industry collaborations. The Initiative also includes sports scholarships and provides opportunities to share expertise and experience in tribal and indigenous higher education. A Joint Education Council will be established to implement the Prime Ministers' Initiative.

The two Prime Ministers welcomed the signing of a Science and Innovation Protocol for Cooperation, which will provide a framework for future scientific exchanges and research collaboration. The two Leaders welcomed the first joint science initiative, the Science Research Workshop on Food Technologies and Dairy, held recently in New Zealand at the Riddet Institute/Massey University and Lincoln University.

The two Leaders also acknowledged the good cooperation developing in the civil aviation sector. Both sides are exploring cooperation in the aviation field, including the furthering of relationships in the training area.

The two Prime Ministers agreed to strengthen bilateral defence cooperation. Prime Minister Key announced that New Zealand will appoint a Defence Adviser to India to better facilitate defence linkages. Both sides noted the need for ensuring the safety and security of sea lanes and agreed that regional and global cooperation should continue to ensure maritime security. The two Leaders agreed that ship visits and staff college exchanges had deepened bilateral defence cooperation to the benefit of both sides.

The two Prime Ministers stressed the importance of reform of the United Nations Security Council to ensure it reflects the realities of the 21st century. Prime Minister Key announced the support of New Zealand for India's membership in a reformed Security Council, including in any expansion of permanent membership.

Both sides share the vision of a nuclear weapon free world. New Zealand welcomes increased engagement between India and the multilateral export control regimes.

The two Prime Ministers discussed global security challenges and agreed on the importance of working in international and regional contexts to achieve stability and prosperity for all. Both Prime Ministers strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms.


India and New Zealand cooperate in regional bodies such as the East Asia Summit (EAS), the ASEAN Regional Forum, ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting Plus and the Asia Europe Meeting. The two Leaders reaffirmed the importance of these bodies for furthering regional security, economic partnership and political linkages. They agreed to work together to progress the Comprehensive Economic Partnership under the EAS.

People-to-people exchanges form the backbone of the bilateral relationship. The two Prime Ministers agreed that strengthening these enduring personal linkages was a key part of ensuring continued vitality and growth in the relationship. To encourage a deeper understanding of each others’ countries New Zealand created the Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship in memory of one of New Zealand’s most inspiring citizens. Prime Minister Key announced that the fellowship recipient for 2011 would be a prominent Indian businessperson.

The Indian community in New Zealand is a vibrant platform for the two-way flow of visitors, migrants and students between New Zealand and India. In further strengthening these valuable ties, in January this year the Government of India conferred on the New Zealand Governor-General the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award (PBSA), the highest honour for overseas Indians.

India and New Zealand share strong sporting ties, particularly in the games of cricket and hockey, which are slowly expanding to range of sports. Cricket is an example of India’s and New Zealand’s shared heritage, close sporting ties and bilateral friendship. Prime Minister Key congratulated India on its hosting of the Cricket World Cup with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh this year and the Indian team’s victory. The two Leaders looked forward to the next World Cup in 2015, co-hosted by New Zealand and Australia. The two Leaders agreed to work together towards building stronger sporting ties between the two countries as a means to promoting stronger people-to-people links.

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29 June 2011
Film Co-Production Agreement signed with India

Prime Minister John Key says the signing of a Film Co-Production Agreement between New Zealand and India will be a great boost to the film industries in both countries.

The Agreement will encourage further cooperation between New Zealand and India's film industries by enhancing screen co-investment, joint creative input, and film crew interaction.

“India is a rapidly rising player in the region, and we want to build on our already strong cultural and economic ties,” Mr Key says.

A number of Bollywood blockbusters, such as “I Hate Luv Stories” and “The Players”, have been filmed partly in New Zealand, and there are significant potential benefits for our creative industries in gaining access to the India film market.

Mr Key will go on the set of “The Players” when he visits Film City in Mumbai tomorrow.

“The influence of these films, with an audience of millions, has been instrumental in stimulating Indian interest in New Zealand as a tourism destination. This Agreement will also offer greater certainty to investors looking to fund New Zealand-India film co-productions.”

Film co-production agreements allow approved film and television projects to gain the status of “official co-productions” which gives film projects access to the benefits accorded to national films in each of the co-producers’ countries. This includes access to funding and incentives, as well as facilitating temporary immigration and importation of equipment - within existing regulations.

New Zealand currently has 11 bilateral film co-production arrangements in force.

The Agreement, signed by Prime Minister Key and Prime Minister Singh in New Delhi today, has been negotiated between New Zealand's Ministry for Culture and Heritage and India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

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29 June 2011
PM announces Education Initiative with India

Prime Minister John Key announced today an agreement between India and New Zealand to progress a joint Prime Ministerial Education Initiative between the two countries.

The New Zealand-India Education Initiative is a jointly-funded programme to enhance bilateral cooperation in higher education, research, and skills development.

There will also be a focus on building knowledge and awareness among young business leaders from both countries through scholarships and internships in each other’s business schools and industrial enterprises.

The total funding for the initiative is expected to be NZ$1 million per year with both New Zealand and India contributing equally.

“New Zealand’s education relationship with India has gone well beyond just student recruitment,” says Mr Key.

“This initiative aims to strengthen that relationship even further and increase academic links between our countries and open up opportunities to collaborate on education services.”

To deliver on the initiative, the Prime Ministers have established an Education Council.

“This provides a mechanism for India to bring together a range of education and skills-development funding agencies and provides New Zealand with a simplified one-stop-shop to deal with.

“This will promote a close and collaborative government relationship and foster more involvement by our respective sectors. I look forward to seeing the Council becoming a flagship of the relationship between our two countries.”

The visit to India by Mr Key provides an opportunity to broaden and deepen the bilateral education relationship between the two countries.

It is also an opportunity to promote New Zealand’s world-class higher education and research facilities and technical and vocational education capabilities while supporting engagement with Indian institutions, research organisations, and education businesses.

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News release

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29 June 2011
PM announces Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship

Prime Minister John Key announced today that Indian businessman and Member of Parliament Vijay Mallya will be the next recipient of the Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship.

Mr Key made the announcement in Mumbai while on a four day state visit to India.

The Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship is a tribute to the special contribution made by Sir Edmund Hillary to New Zealand’s bilateral relationships with India and Nepal.

Vijay Mallya follows Rahul Gandhi who was the recipient of the inaugural Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship in 2010.

Mr Key says, “Vijay Mallya is an outstanding businessman with a great affection for New Zealand. He is a worthy recipient of the Fellowship and will be a great asset in strengthening the longstanding and friendly ties between the two countries.”

Vijay Mallya is Chairman of United Breweries Group, a multinational conglomerate encompassing 60 companies, and head of Kingfisher Airlines. He is also an Independent MP in the Upper House.

Vijay Mallya owns the Bangalore IPL cricket team that Daniel Vettori played for this year, and owns the Formula One team “Force India’.

“I will be delighted to welcome Vijay Mallya to New Zealand as the Prime Minister’s Fellow,” says Mr Key.