PTI New Zealand: Launches freight assistance scheme

Pacific exporters struggling with increasing freight costs are now able to apply for the PTI New Zealand's Freight Support Programme (FSP).

Pacific exporters struggling with increasing freight costs are now able to apply for the Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand (PTI NZ) Freight Support Programme (FSP).

After an overwhelming response to last year’s previous programme, PTI NZ is once again offering small grants to offset rising freight costs. Last year’s FSP highlighted the extent of the Pacific global export economy, with businesses reaching over 40 countries in 2021. The ocean economy makes up just under USD400 million from maritime and trade related activities, and freight costs have escalated by nearly 50% in the past three years. These grants provide the short-term relief needed for Pacific businesses.

The programme has been re-launched to support exporters across the Blue Pacific coping with the increasing impact on transport sector fees. The FSP responds to challenges experienced by small, medium, and micro businesses and an effort to assuage the vulnerability and risks associated with reduced connectivity.
This iteration of the FSP will also consider import freight costs for raw materials, as the vast majority of MSMEs are heavily reliant on imported materials for manufacturing.

The Pacific Freight Support Programme aims to:
• strengthen business resilience
• support businesses affected by supply chain constraints
• enhance businesses competitiveness in international markets.

The programme offers eligible businesses funding assistance for freight costs for the current year; grants of up to NZ$ 2,500 per enterprise will be administered on a cost share basis – which means businesses will be required to match the grant money they receive.

Applications open for:
Micronesian businesses – 22nd August 2022
Polynesian businesses – 29th August 2022
Melanesian businesses – 5th September

Eligibility:
• Have a registered business and export licence in one of the Pacific Islands Forum Member Countries and be exporting to New Zealand or the Pacific region during 2022, or have forward export orders for 2022
• Be operating for a minimum of one year
• Provide documentary evidence of freight costs over the past 12 months (e.g., bill of lading, air waybills, freight company invoices and/or statements)
• Proof of business registration and export licence
• Provide documentary evidence of the applicant/ business listed in the application form is the name of the company applying for the subsidy.

Applications will be reviewed against the eligibility criteria by a selection panel.

Businesses are welcome to apply here.

More information is available here, or contact ellen.callister@pacifictradeinvest.com

About PTI New Zealand
• Part of the Pacific Trade Invest Network of offices operating in Sydney, Australia; Beijing, People’s Republic of China; Geneva, Switzerland and Auckland, New Zealand
• An agency of Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) and is funded by New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT)
• Supports the 16 Blue Pacific Forum countries: the Cook Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, French Polynesia, Kiribati, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Caledonia, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.