Aucklanders Positive About Apec 99, Survey Shows

  • Dr Lockwood Smith

More than two-thirds of Aucklanders believe the APEC Leaders' Meeting next September will be good for the city, a recent survey shows.

The survey, conducted by UMR Insight for the APEC Taskforce of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, shows 68% of Aucklanders think the APEC Leaders' Meeting will be good for Auckland.

The result showed Aucklanders recognised the potential of APEC 99 to put their city on the world map, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Rt Hon Don McKinnon said today.

"APEC 99 will bring some of the world's most important political and business leaders to Auckland, along with journalists from the world's leading news organisations. It's clear that Aucklanders see the potential to showcase their city and boost the local economy."

Almost half of respondents identified publicity and profile of the city as a possible benefit of the APEC meeting. Others included helping the local economy and increased tourism.

Safety and security and traffic congestion were the two most commonly-cited possible problems. Mr McKinnon said around 40% of the APEC 99 budget was earmarked for security, and thorough planning would ensure the Police were well-prepared for all contingencies. Aucklanders would be fully informed well in advance of any possible traffic disruption around 12-13 September, when the Leaders' Meeting takes place.

The research also shows high awareness of APEC, with 67% of respondents having heard of APEC. Of those, 89% were aware that the Leaders' Meeting would be held in Auckland next September. Knowledge of APEC was low, with 76% of those who had heard of APEC knowing not much or hardly anything about it.

"Knowledge about APEC will naturally rise as the meeting draws closer and publicity about it increases," Mr McKinnon said. The Government will do its best to ensure the public is well-informed about APEC and what it means for New Zealand."

The survey was conducted in mid-October among 400 Auckland residents. It has a margin of error of ±4.9%.