Friday, 29th September, 2017
The World Chambers Congress was the premier event of its kind bringing together chamber, business and government figures.  The congress brought together the globe’s most prominent leaders and brightest minds, with the aim to transform the future of business.  
I was sponsored by NZCCI to attend this event and this generous gift was very much appreciated. The NZCCI had a goal of getting representation from all 60 Chambers of Commerce and Industry in NZ and they achieved this!  It was a great way to talk to chamber representatives from all over the country to get ideas and talk about the challenges we face.  I found this invaluable and look forward to implementing some of the clever ideas we discussed - don’t reinvent the wheel I say!
The congress had a focus on sustainability and business transformation which was incredibly interesting and applicable to what we are doing in NZ. I was moved to tears on hearing how chambers in Germany helped 30000 Syrians refugees integrate in Hamburg last year and lobbied for huge changes in immigration laws to allow them to work. I was moved again to hear how a chamber in Colombia fundraised US$14M to build a convention centre to ensure the survival of their region during a sustained downturn in coffee prices. This revolutionised the region, created 300 new businesses, a tourism and hospitality school and 2000 permanent jobs.  Shining examples of how private enterprise can strengthen communities, lobby government and create wealth all at the same time.
In essence, Chambers working with strong communities can build sustainable wealth that benefits everyone.  The board and I are passionate about improving and strengthening the chamber network so we can foster vitality and strength in our business community - I am really excited for the year ahead!
For more information contact Catie Noble, 07 277 2177.
Catie Noble, President, Taupo Chamber of Commerce.