Start-Up, Singles Day, and Summit
Welcome to the YA's newsletter, November edition!
With the traffic light system just around the corner, we are eagerly anticipating reuniting with friends and families long separated by a grueling lockdown. YA has one final online event of the year coming up really soon - meanwhile, APEC 2021 has concluded, and China's Singles Day experienced its first even slump since its inception.
#1. YA - Free Food & Beverage Webinar with Angus Brown
The YA is excited to host Angus Brown, the Co-Founder of Ārepa, New Zealand’s #1 Brainfood Technology company in an online webinar, touching on the trials and tribulations of start-up life.
Our final event for the year was originally scheduled for earlier today but has been postponed for the following week due to unforeseen circumstances. We’re still incredibly excited for this to go ahead and hope you can make the new date!
Alongside his co-founder Zac Robinson, Angus has previously noted a demand in the market for mental clarity and a product that, unlike caffeine drinks, was good for the brain, good for health and good for mental wellness.
New Zealand nootropic company Ārepa is making a name for itself in the industry, and Angus Brown is an incredible speaker when it comes to having your pick on all things start-up! Just last year they were awarded the winner of the start-up category in the NutraIngredients-Asia awards and have the All Blacks among their customers base.
Angus will be touching upon how he came up with Ārepa and the inspiration behind it, the challenges of starting your own business, and the process and benefits of expanding the business - notably expanding into China, which is in the cards next year for Ārepa!
Whether you’re looking for information on a business expanding into China, starting your own F&B business, or even just what it’s like to be the Co-Founder of a successful New Zealand brand, don’t hesitate to register your interest here to be updated on the new and improved date!
#2. Culture Desk: Minimalist Trend of Young Chinese Sinks Singles Day Spending
China’s Singles Day, or “Double 11”, is the largest online shopping festival in the world, with it originally being held over a 24-hour period, but now stretched to eleven days. This year, after more than a decade of rapid growth, Singles Day showed signs of slowing down. The e-commerce giant Alibaba reported its sales growth rate (or gross merchandise value; GMV) of just 8.5% - its lowest ever. Since Alibaba founded the festival in 2009, its GMV has grown by double digits every year until 2021.
There are several factors that may be behind this slump of spending. With ongoing Coronavirus outbreaks around the world, consumers naturally are going to be more cautious of supply chain disruptions, and in times of economic recession, people tend to be more frugal.
But there is one niche trend that could be contributing to this year’s spending stats. China’s new generation of young people might not be as spendthrift as previous ones, as a growing movement of minimalist living gains steam. This has been reflected in the rise of “cleanfluencers” inspiring young Chinese to declutter and be content with less. Chinese search engine giant Baidu also revealed that searches for decluttering one’s possessions and for wardrobe organisation tripled between 2019 and 2021. Furthermore, digital forum Douban displayed an increase in minimalist or “low desire” lifestyle groups.
In light of climate change and the shift towards sustainability, it is very encouraging to see that intentional, ethical consumption and minimalism are taking hold in many places and across a variety of demographics, including the young generation of a nation well-known for the consumerism of its rising middle class.
#3. Business Desk: APEC + COP26 - China Lens
Global plans set in motion: APEC outcomes and COP26.
APEC 2021 officially closed this month with consensus from all 21 nations on various topics that will lay the foundation in our regional Covid recovery, set a plan to achieve sustainability targets and ensure a robust global supply chain.
Held yearly, APEC is one of the biggest trade forums in the Asia-Pacific region and New Zealand was fortunate enough to host it virtually.
The outcomes of APEC 2021 were:
- Agreement on an NZ-led initiative to ensure equitable access to manufacturing and access of Covid vaccines.
- Structural reform and agreement on matters of information sharing, tax and service exports.
- Stronger plans to tackle sustainability concerns via the Aotearoa Plan of Action.
- Greater visibility and inclusivity of minority and underrepresented groups.
Read more on APEC and its leaders’ declarations here.
Additionally in November, another conference that brought leaders together from all around the world was COP26.
COP26 is the 2021 United Nations climate change conference held in Glasglow, UK. During the two-week conference, members from 197 parties gathered to collectively combat the issues of climate change and global warming.
Headlines were made in the closing week as the United States and China reached an agreement about cooperation on measures to stop climate change, including lowering methane emissions, phasing out the use of coal and forest conservation.
Read more about COP26 here.
#4. Auckland Trade and Economic Policy School (ATEPS)
The University of Auckland’s Public Policy Institute holds an annual Auckland Trade and Economic Policy School (ATEPS). The School was launched in 2019 with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT). The topic this year is “Resetting trade rules and norms in the context of Covid19”. ATEPS features a variety of local and international experts who will address the persistence of Covid-19 and its impacts, as well as creating new conversations around international trade rules, the connections between trade and health, digital trade regulations, and further thought-provoking questions. For more information on the 2021 ATEPS and how to register, please find out more here.
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Editors: David, Isabella, Melanie and Nick
Disclaimer: Opinions expressed in this newsletter are the sole opinion of the NZCTA Young Associates and do not represent the opinions of the wider New Zealand China Trade Association or any of its executive committee.