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New Zealand forms Future Technology Leadership Group to harness N$1.5-billion transport tech sector

New Zealand forms Future Technology Leadership Group to harness N$1.5-billion transport tech sector

On Mar 19, Minister of Transport Phil Twyford announced
that a new Future Technology Leadership Group is formed, with the objectives of
helping New Zealand harness the N$1.5 billion a year estimated value to the
economy from Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) as well as the social benefits
they create.

At the T-Tech Conference in
Auckland, hosted by ITS New Zealand, Minister Twyford announced the leadership group
will develop the 10-year Land Transport Technology Roadmap.

Intelligent transport systems have the potential to
significantly improve traffic flows, reduce road congestion, increase logistics
productivity, lower transport emissions and improve the safety and efficiency
of personal travel.

 “This is an exciting time for
transport and technology. Intelligent Transport Systems have the potential to
not only make transport more efficient, better for the environment and safer,
we now know they can make a valuable contribution to New Zealand’s economy,” said
Minister Twyford.

At the same time,
Business NZ released
a report called Unlocking Commercial Opportunities of
Intelligent Transport Systems
.

The industry
report focuses on 3 areas: (1) drones, (2) smart logistics and (3) autonomous
self-driving vehicles.

The report
highlights the value of the transport technology (“T-Tech”) industry. It found that
New Zealand has a good regulatory and business environment to benefit from ITS
– the sunrise tech industry that could earn up to N$1.5 billion a year.

According to the press
release
by BusinessNZ, unlocking commercial opportunities from ITS is
a call to action for both business and the Government, recognising the enormous
potential for developing and manufacturing ITS such as self-driving cars and
drones in New Zealand.

Currently, ITS products are already produced in New Zealand,
including GPS systems, drones, robotic port cranes, airport baggage handling
systems and wireless charging technology.

The report calls for greater collaboration between the
Government and business to unlock innovation and export growth around ITS
technology and services. Data sharing greater R&D, the upskilling of
regulators, and aligning education and skills training with future needs are
also recommended.

Chair of the Intelligent Transport Systems Advisory Group
David Prentice says New Zealand is a good location for the new industry because
of its growing high-tech manufacturing sector, experience in manufacturing
niche component parts, and reputation as a test bed for new technologies and
world class connectivity.

The report also highlights the potential for New Zealand to
respond to global demand and become a first mover in an innovative, high-growth
industry that is set to transform transport throughout the world.

According to Mr Prentice, businesses are already operating
in the tech sector and new businesses looking for growth opportunities should
consider the economic and social benefits to be gained from moving into this
new area.

“The business community wants to continue
working with Government to develop policies that will allow an ITS ecosystem to
flourish and help business and transport system users address our local
transport challenges and compete on the world stage,” he added.

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