Doing Business in New Zealand

In their report titled “Doing Business in 2017”, the World Bank Group took looks at some important factors that make markets more suitable to entrepreneurs. The report focused on specifics like tax requirements, labor regulations, as well as access to electricity, receiving credit and resolving issues with insolvency. 

190 countries were examined and were listed in order of their convenience and company-friendliness and of all these, New Zealand came out on top. For those encouraged by this notion, the following information included here can help you establish yourself in this thriving nation. 

1. Learn Local Laws for Doing Business in New Zealand

The labor laws in New Zealand are in place to ensure that employees right’s are not infringed upon. Some of them include: 

Four weeks of paid holiday

Guaranteed paid sick leave

Three days of paid bereavement leave

11 public holidays a year

Time and a half pay for work on public holidays

Up to 52 weeks of parental leave

In the event that an employer does not fulfill these requirements or violates any othr of New Zealand’s labor laws, they will be listed as a non-compliant employer and their capacity to sponsor work visas will be revoked. This can be a considerable problem for multinational corporations trying to get their team together across different countries. 

There are several different business visas available depending on the type of business being done. These are available for those looking to begin a business as well as those looking to hire employees from abroad. Finally, foreign entrepreneurs and employees will be asked to provide proof that they possess the skills to improve New Zealand’s before their work visa will be granted. 

2. Understand New Zealand’s Local Market

There is no way a company will last long any local market without a keen insight on how it operates. You will find a website managed by the New Zealand government that keeps up-to-date information on business, economy and statistics of the country’s markets. This is a good way for people to get an idea of what type of potential they have in this market. This site also includes the information vital to providing policy makers, employees and companies of all types understand the trends that drive the people and decide what businesses are emphasized in New Zealand. 

Furthermore, there is an annual report released by the New Zealand Treasury Office which provides and excellent overview of the country’s economy. The “New Zealand Economic and Financial Overview” provides a vital insight that no research into business expansion in New Zealand can be without. 

3. Embrace Maori Business Culture

Forming 15.4% of New Zealand’s population, the Māori are the indigenous people and the largest minority. Because of their presence and importance to New Zealand’s culture, companies are expected to immerse themselves well in Māori business culture and understand how it will affect their business here. This is often in the small details such as printing business cards with English on one side and Māori on the other. 

You can expect the Māori view of the world to be different from the Western or Eastern culture’s you may be familiar with. One good example is how a Māori will be more inclined to lease land than sell the same plot. This is a practice based on their connection to the land and its value above any material wealth. Any company hoping to do business in New Zealand will have to be fully aware of the Māori culture to ensure their business does not face unnecessary misunderstandings which can potentially threaten its position here. 

4. Build a Platform for Business in the South Pacific

New Zealand can make the perfect platform for launching other businesses in the South Pacific. New Zealand has free-trade with 16 other WTO members in the area and is closely linked to markets such as Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea. 

For those companies planning to make such an expansion New Zealand’s comparatively light regulatory burden makes it the perfect place to begin such and expansion to the surrounding areas. 

5. Consider Using a Local Partner

Businesses that are based in other countries may consider the benefits of a local partnership essential to establishing themselves well and achieving greater success in this unknown location. A local partnership can help by splitting costs, he;p you understand local tax changes like these to New Zealand GST and provide local Intel and making the entrance into New Zealand an easier matter. 

If a company is interested in accessing the market very quickly, it will need help to establish its legal presence and provide the proper work permits for operations in New Zealand. Here is where the services of an International PEO (Professional Employer Organization) will be essential to expediting the process. The primary advantage of a PEO is that it helps companies get their legal foothold in a country without having to risk in-house compliance maintenance. 

Other important advantages from a PEO include a better understanding of the local labor laws and climate. This can ensure that foreign companies lower their risks and stay on the safe side of the law while they develop their business in New Zealand.

Adam Torkildson