The Canterbury Employers Chamber of Commerce held an exclusive luncheon with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern earlier this month.
This was the third luncheon of its kind for The Chamber, with previous events fronted by Winston Peters and John Key. It was fitting the event was held the day before International Women’s Day. Jacinda captured the attention of around 660 members and non-members of The Chamber at the Air Force Museum in Wigram.
“What a crowd,” Jacinda said as she commenced her speech, commending Christchurch’s growth and spirit “in spite of the hurdles”.She praised our newest buildings, such as the central library and the “beautifully refurbished” Town Hall, said she was “jealous” of her partner Clarke Gayford enjoying the Shapeshifter performance last week and assured our awaited new stadium “will have a roof” to watch the Crusaders in comfort during winter.
She covered most poignant topics including export, and a fairer tax system, transitioning to a “clean green carbon-neutral New Zealand” and being ready for a global economic downturn. Wellbeing and mental health are top priority for the budget, noting the repercussions of both for the business world.
Chamber of Commerce CEO Leann Watson says she was pleased Jacinda confirmed her commitment to Christchurch is still a priority, including our anchor projects, and commitment to tourism and trade relationships.
The annual event was sponsored by the Christchurch Casino. CEO Brett Anderson says it was the best speech he had heard from her. “She didn’t avoid any issues and spoke what was on everyone’s minds.”