In early November, members of the Screen Auckland team were pleased to take part in the Tripartite Economic Summit in Guangzhou, China, at the start of a three-city screen industry mission with the New Zealand Film Commission.

Michael Brook, Screen Auckland Manager, and Jasmine Millet, Screen Attraction Executive linked up with Auckland’s delegation to the three-day summit which included more than 70 organisations and nearly 100 delegates led by Auckland Mayor Phil Goff.

The Tripartite Economic Alliance is a cooperative agreement between Auckland, Guangzhou and Los Angeles – three long-standing sister cities – which was signed in 2014. Los Angeles hosted the summit in 2015, Auckland last year, and this year it was Guangzhou’s turn.

The alliance’s business focus is across multiple industries and activities such as tourism, food and beverage, bio-tech and urban planning. Screen and digital are one of the key areas of focus.

Michael Brook says it was exciting to have a strong representation from the screen and digital sectors in Guangzhou including Digipost, Images and Sound, Diva Productions, Syrp, Staples VR and Method.

It was also pleasing to have Dave Gibson, Chris Payne and Raymond Suen from NZFC attend the summit which had three sessions devoted to screen and digital – with speakers from Auckland, Guangzhou and Los Angeles. One of the sessions was a round table which enabled discussion with leaders from Guangzhou’s top production companies and organisations.

Speakers across these sessions included Grant Baker from Images and Sound, Sam Ramlu from Method, Chris Payne from the NZFC, and Michael Brook.

Summit delegates were also treated to inspirational keynote speech from Sir Richard Taylor as he talked about China-New Zealand collaboration and the development of future creative talent.

There was a fascinating tour of some key companies in Guangzhou, including Zhujiang Media Group, Alpha – one of the largest animation companies in China – and LeafOn, where the delegation witnessed some fantastic holographic technologies.

There were numerous networking discussions and business meetings between the Auckland delegates and their international colleagues. Early discussions also took place around a possible screenwriters’ exchange, and Screen Auckland and the NZFC have already hosted a leading Guangzhou animation company CEO who was on the roundtable panel mentioned earlier on a visit to some Auckland companies.

Michael and Jasmine, along with a number of other delegates, also travelled with the NZFC group for key meetings and events in Shanghai and Beijing.

There was a collaborative spirit throughout the entire trip, and Michael thanked all the delegates who contributed to the success of the event, to the New Zealand Consulate in Guangzhou, and especially to the NZFC for its collaborative partnership.