Latest News

AmCham shares news updates from member companies - subscribe by RSS, follow our LinkedIn page or become a member to receive notifications. 
  • 02 Oct 2018 4:24 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    The United States Navy has awarded Air New Zealand Gas Turbines a USD$17 million contract to service and overhaul 12 General Electric LM2500 Power Turbines that power some of the Navy’s cruisers.

    The work will be carried out at the airline’s gas turbines facility in Auckland and is expected to commence in October, concluding in the 2020 Financial Year.

    Air New Zealand Chief Ground Operations Officer Carrie Hurihanganui says this latest contract is testament to the high regard the US Navy has for the airline’s gas turbines division.

    “This is a significant win for our Gas Turbines business, building on what has already become a strong relationship with the US Navy to service the engine units that power much of its fleet,” says Ms Hurihanganui.

    In early 2017 Air New Zealand Gas Turbines, along with competitor maintenance facilities, secured two significant US Navy contracts which enable each party to bid for turbine overhaul work from a total pool of US $126 million worth of work.  Air New Zealand Gas Turbines was also independently awarded three smaller contracts.

    The airline last year secured USD$20 million worth of confirmed work covering 11 US Navy engine units. This latest stream of work brings the total committed US Navy work to date to US$37 million for a total of 23 engines.

    Air New Zealand Gas Turbines is a business unit of Air New Zealand, providing gas turbine overhaul and repair services to clients across a range of industries.  The business began sourcing work in the industrial and marine sector more than 35 years ago and has since supported several of the world’s navies, offshore oil and gas platform operators and power generation companies.

  • 01 Oct 2018 3:55 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Along with key sponsor United Airlines we’re involved in two simultaneously run conferences in Auckland 17 & 18 October. The CAPA Corporate Travel Summit as well as the CAPA Aviation Summit are run in tandem with each other. A high calibre of industry experts speak and participate in panels. The event organiser is the renowned research institute CAPA (Centre for Aviation) which brings these events to different parts of the world. They are a one time opportunity to update yourself with trends and to network with your counterparts in other companies. Business World Travel can arrange your complementary invitation for qualified corporate procurement managers,  CFO’s, HR Managers,  Travel Bookers/Arrangers within companies….anyone who is involved with the travel process and policy within a company. Amongst a range of industry updates you’ll hear about:   

    • Supply and demand forecast for hotels
    • Digitisation, personalisation and mobilisation of travel
    • Balancing the needs of the modern business traveller with program objectives and policies
    • Role of travel as a procurement category

    If you would like more information please contact Chantal Malyon, Client relationship Executive here at BWT (09 5293700 or to learn more about CAPA.

    Airline Update:

    • Welcome back AA/UA! The seasonal flight by American Airlines between Auckland and Los Angeles re-starts 30 October (Departs AKL 1520hrs Arrives LAX 0630hrs) and United Airlines re-commences Auckland to San Francisco on 29 October (departs AKL 1430hrs Arrives LAX 0640hrs). The UA flight will then operate year-round featuring a reduced schedule in the NZ winter of three flights weekly. United code-shares with Air NZ. Our connecting clients really enjoyed these two flights with their early arrival into SFO or LAX – they both connect with an enormous bank of connecting flights – putting you into many eastern US destinations for cocktail hour and then a full night’s sleep before hitting the ground running the next morning.  
    • United Airlines is launching  Premium Economy – to be branded as United Premium Plus – the new seat features on some aircraft already but sales, promotion and the full service won’t commence until a formal product launch in the near future. United Premium Plus will feature upgraded dining options, complimentary beverages and Saks Fifth Avenue bedding.  
    • In other news from United Airlines, they advise their new collaboration with Private Suite at Los Angeles’ LAX. Private Suite passengers don’t wait, don’t queue, have their own TSA screening room, private customs and border protection and direct planeside transportation.  You check in at the exclusive Private Suite which is located along California Street on the southern airport border at LAX. On departure of your United flight, you check in at Private Suite and eight Private Suite team members then get involved with you. Employee 1 greets you; employee 2 escorts you into the United Suite; employees 3 & 4 manage special service requests and arrange restaurants, showers and conference rooms; employee 5 escorts you through the private TSA screening; employee 6 chauffeurs you to the aircraft steps; employee 7 handles your luggage; employee 8 awaits you on the jet bridge. Ask about the annual subscription for this unique service.      
    • Air New Zealand’s new Auckland to Chicago non-stop flight launches on 30 November – operating 3x weekly (Wednesday Friday and Sunday) northbound the flight offers delivery into the significant United Airlines’ Chicago O’Hare hub. This is a particularly useful connection point to  Eastern Canada - Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa.  
    • Hawaiian Airlines’ newest mainland destination is Boston. This follows the recent launch of Long Beach. 
    • Japan Airlines is boosting its trans- Pacific route network with another route to the US West Coast. JAL will link Tokyo Narita and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport starting on 31 March 2019. It becomes JAL's sixth West Coast route between Japan and North America. Linking with OneWorld partners Qantas and American Airlines this new route could create a very economical ‘Circle Pacific’ business trip airfare.  
    • We’re delighted to see a US airline finally making the ‘best of the best’ list in the Conde Nast Travel Readers Awards 2018. American Airlines has joined the ranks of the worlds top airlines’ for their very good Business Class, albeit just sliding into the Top Ten , at No.10! Top Business Class goes to Emirates with runner up Singapore Airlines.  Likewise for the world’s top airports, Atlanta’s Hartfield-Jackson, Delta Airlines hub was voted in the world top ten, once again at No.10! 
    • IATA’s list of the top five airlines ranked by total scheduled passenger kilometres flown in 2017 are: 1. American Airlines (with 324 million); 2. Delta Air Lines (316.3 million); 3. United Airlines (311 million); 4. Emirates (289 million); and 5. Southwest Airlines (207.7 million).
    • Air New Zealand has advised that the US Customs User Fee (YC) will increase from USD$5.65 to USD$5.77, effective 01 October 2018.
    Hotel update: 

    One of our favourite ski in/ski out hotels in the world happens to be the only one in Vail! Though until 21 April 19 we have an exclusive offer of a bonus free night at the impeccably transformed Hotel Talisa. Completely renovated last year the hotel has its own chair lift and ticketing counter right at the back door! Enjoy a complimentary 4th night when stay three consecutive. The offer includes the usual Virtuoso amenities. Ask any of our leisure team about your Northern Hemisphere ski holiday. 

    We have a great value-added offer at Luxe Hotel Rodeo Drive. This boutique hotel is at the epi-centre of many of our clients’ world – those of love to shop! The Luxe is after all in the heart of Rodeo Drive. With a Club benefit rate of US$399 (plus 15.2% local tax) we include Club benefits (3x daily food tastings and pairings, comp wi-fi, beverages from 1700-2200 and 24-hour self-service espresso bar). Most useful though is the guaranteed 3.00pm check out.   

    Travel better! At ATPI/Business World Travel we’re a member of the prestigious US-based Virtuoso, an invited group of the world’s leading travel agents and where we achieve benefits over and above any other travel agent or booking site for our clients. For the same as any advertised rate including on the hotel site, or Expedia you’ll receive:

    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • Daily Breakfast for two 
    • Food & Beverage or Spa services credit usually around US$100 
    • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wifi
    • Often some other kind of personalised in-room amenity
    • Take a look at or call one of our BWT Travel Advisors

    Executive Leisure and Private Clients: 

    UK Conde Nast Traveller’s reader Awards 2018 has just been announced and they’ve awarded Hawaii the prize as fourth best islands in the world, noteworthy for its beaches. Hawaii was placed after Greece, the Maldives and the Balearic Islands. All are worth visiting! In the same Awards and at the other end of the temperature scale was Ski Resorts, North American Resorts Whistler, Canada sitting at 2nd best in the world, followed by  Aspen at No.7 and Vail at No. 11. No.1 is Val d’Isere. 

    Crystal Cruises has given us an excellent fare on their Solo Fares programme – these are available for a 130% if the regular fare. Explore the world on your own terms doing what you want when you want! Crystal offers Michelin standard dining including Chef Nobu Matsuhisa, enrichment programmes ranging from technology to wellness, pre-paid gratuities and open bars and lounges. There are many itineraries starting or concluding in or near the US (New England, Alaska, Panama Canal). Solo Travellers are incredibly well catered for and looked after – if you want! At BWT we have cruise experts with decades of experience so call us today toc hat about your best option with Crystal.   Every Crustal sailing has a Virtuoso host on board and you’re provided with ‘cruise-within-a-cruise’ experience with us that the other guest simply don’t receive. 


    The US House of Representatives passed bipartisan legislation to ensure only travellers who have undergone required background and security checks are able to use TSA’s Pre-Check screening lanes. Occasionally other qualified/worthy travellers have had access to the lanes without the formality of the required checks.  Previously a number of First Class or regular US  travellers received this benefit without having to go through the advance formal checks. 

    Travellers heading to the US from any airport in the world should allow 3-hours for advance check in. Passengers are randomly selected for the second check and on some flights it might be 6 passengers and others up to 100 need to go through the second screening and an interview. A reminder that your electronic items (phone, laptop, camera etc) must be charged and working.  Remember clients, Honolulu is in America and the 3-hours applies!

    Powder has now joined the liquid/gels hand luggage screening ‘no-no’ list. International travellers from New Zealand and Australia  will notice changes to the way airport security screening takes place – all powders you are carrying in your hand luggage have to be separately screened. This will also apply to baby formula you might be taking on board. 

    For more details and bookings contact your BWT consultant on 0800-508 580 or 09-5293700

  • 01 Oct 2018 10:54 AM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker heads to Sydney tomorrow to promote New Zealand’s trade and investment interests.

    The two day visit includes meetings with the Australian and New Zealand branches of the American Chamber of Commerce as well as with companies doing business and investing in New Zealand.

    David Parker said he will take the opportunity to stress New Zealand’s commitment to open rules-based markets and to outline the Coalition Government’s economic agenda.

    “As a small trading nation that relies on access to markets and foreign capital, we have worked closely with our partners in the Asia Pacific to promote trade and economic connectivity.

    “This work is more important than ever as the world faces the economic danger of a rise in protectionism.”

    He will also seek to expand Australian and American investment by reaffirming that New Zealand remains open to trade and to investment in our businesses and forests.

    “We already have strong investment ties with Australia and the US. The satellite launching business Rocket Lab is a great illustration of the sorts of innovative links we want to encourage and expand.”

    His itinerary includes a meeting with venture capital funds.

    “As last week’s 1 per cent June quarter GDP figure showed, New Zealand has a strong and growing economy. A wide range of free trade agreements, pro-competitive regulation, an efficient tax regime, and an open political system make it a great place to do business,” David Parker said.

    Rating agency Moody’s last week confirmed New Zealand’s Aaa rating with a stable outlook – the highest score it is able to give – and said it expected New Zealand’s growth to be stronger than other Aaa-rated countries in the next few years.

    “The Government’s changes to the overseas investment regime aim to channel foreign investment into the productive sectors of the economy rather than into speculative sectors like residential housing.

    “The recently-passed Overseas Investment Amendment Act seeks to support business investment and, in particular, encourages foreign direct investment in forestry, where it is crucially needed,” David Parker said.

    While he is in Sydney David Parker will also meet NZ Trade and Enterprise directors to discuss the important work they do in the region.


  • 27 Sep 2018 9:25 AM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    In a New Zealand first, Kiwi Wealth’s new digital platform gives investors direct access to shares of US-listed companies and ETFs, easily and at low cost.

    Joe Bishop, Kiwi Wealth General Manager Customer, Product and Innovation, says Hatch fills a significant gap in the New Zealand investment market.

    “Kiwi Wealth’s investment philosophy is that opportunity and risk is best diversified through investing in global markets, especially relatively stable, liquid ones like the US. We deliver expertise as fund managers, while recognising some investors also want to self-direct a portion of their money.

    “These investors have the time, interest and knowledge to successfully self-manage their investments. Many want to self-direct their investments in US shares but, until now, it hasn’t been easy because they had to use a broker that offered dated, complex solutions.

    “Hatch is an innovative solution designed to meet the specific needs of the self-directed investor and follows other digital tools we’ve developed to empower people to take control of their investments. These include our award-winning Future You® retirement income planning tool and we’re very close to launching New Zealand’s first robo-advice platform.”

    Hatch is the first of its kind in New Zealand to also allow investors to buy fractions of a full share. This allows greater flexibility for investors to manage their portfolios as well as offering them the ability to invest in highly priced company shares they otherwise couldn’t afford.  Hatch full press release.

  • 26 Sep 2018 9:44 AM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Economic Development NZ (EDNZ) and the US-based International Economic Development Council (IEDC) are to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that will create unprecedented economic development ties between their respective countries, organisations and membership.

    EDNZ and the IEDC share a similar purpose to provide leadership and excellence in economic development for the benefit of members and communities.

    “The IEDC has over 5000 corporate and individual members world-wide so this will provide New Zealand and EDNZ with unprecedented international reach,” said Dr David Wilson, Chair of EDNZ.

    The MoU will connect New Zealand with economic development practitioners from across the globe and provide EDNZ with the opportunity to contribute to the world-wide development of the economic development profession via projects, capability building and annual conferences that push the envelope on contemporary practice and economic development issues.

    ”This is a first for New Zealand that marks a watershed in the advance of the practice in New Zealand and the sharing of expertise and experience amongst a global network,” said Dr Wilson.

  • 25 Sep 2018 4:11 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Matthew Luckie's team will develop new methods to identify and attribute Network/Internet-scale Disruptive Events (NIDEs). These are "Disrupted internet connectivity may significantly impact critical infrastructure systems, such as energy and water systems, the finance sector, commerce, and public safety and emergency communications systems, as well as other essential systems on which society is dependent."

    Despite the impact of NIDEs, there is a lack of any rigorous understanding of internet outages or sufficient tools for their systemic and timely identification.

    The award, valued at $672,000 will support developing a system for internet-scale monitoring of router-reboots and their impact on Border Gateway Protocol routing and reachability. This effort will develop a method to conduct internet measurement and analysis for cybersecurity assessments quantifying and reporting the dependence of inter-domain routing on individual routers and employ an active probing technique. The effort encompasses applied research, software development, operations and maintenance, and development of an API that will allow third-party analyses.

  • 24 Sep 2018 9:39 AM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Hawaiki Submarine Cable has contracted with US-based Ciena Corp to increase the capacity of its deep-sea fibre optic cable by more than half.

    The 15,000-kilometre cable links Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific and the United States and started operating in July with a transmission capacity of 43.8 terabits of data a second.

    Now Hawaiki plans to upgrade that to 67 terabits per second using Ciena’s GeoMesh solution.

    That will give Hawaiki the lowest cost for per bit of data transmitted, and let it offer greater granularity of capacity products for customers, the companies said in a joint statement.

    “As the provider of the largest and fastest link between Australia, New Zealand, and the US, we recognize our customers’ need for innovative capacity solutions that support a shorter time-to-market and improved revenue generation,” Hawaiki chief executive Remi Galasso said.

    “Our collaboration with Ciena will allow us to both scale our infrastructure with minimal operational complications and meet market requirements for greater connectivity and diversity across the Pacific.”

    Hawaiki is a carrier-neutral service linking Sydney, New Zealand, American Samoa, Hawaii and Oregon. The New Zealand link comes ashore at Mangawhai head.

    The US$300 million project was developed with support from anchor customers including Amazon Web Services, Vodafone, American Samoa Telecommunications Authority and Research and Education Advanced Network New Zealand.

    News release

  • 23 Sep 2018 4:43 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Deadline October the 15thto file FINAL 2017 US Tax Return.

    As we approach the end of the month, one more important date is looming for many US citizens who are deemed “wilful in their failure to file tax returns”, the end of OVDP (Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program).

    The OVDP program closes completely on 28th September 2018.

    OVDP was introduced in 2009, and revised in 2014. In brief, OVDP was a form of amnesty program designed to allow taxpayers who could not be considered “unwilful” (ie did not intentionally fail to file their returns) to come back into the fold, with a prescribed penalty regime. For many, this offered an opportunity to come forward regarding international bank accounts, investments or similar, without the risk of criminal prosecution.

    For the last 9 years, this has proved an incredibly successful, netting over $11b in additional tax revenues for the IRS (according to the most recent statistics available).

    It is a common misconception that OVDP is ending as the IRS is no longer focusing on international taxation. This is untrue, and the reality is quite the opposite. The IRS has established multiple international tax enforcement groups, and the amount of penalties issued for unreported entities or accounts (trusts etc.) is rising.

    The IRS introduced OVDP as a voluntary program, as the agency didn’t previously have the ability to track the foreign assets and accounts held by individuals at the time. This is no longer the case, and the IRS no longer needs a voluntary disclosure program, but rather can use the instruments built as part of FATCA to catch up with any individuals it deems to be failing to comply.

    Luckily, few New Zealand or Australian based US citizens have needed to use the OVDP program, instead using the Streamlined Filing Amnesty Program, which is far less punitive and designed for “non-wilful” individuals. Rather than the severe penalty regime of OVDP, Streamlined instead waives all penalties for taxpayers who were not aware of the need to file returns to the IRS, and thus unintentionally failed to comply.

    Now is the time for any US citizen with any worldwide income to take advantage of the amnesty programs available, and come into compliance without penalty. OVDP is the first to go, don’t leave it too late, Streamlined may be next.

    Dave Tzimenakis,Client Services Manager +649 373 2949                                                

  • 18 Sep 2018 4:35 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Your Vote Counts!  Did you know that many U.S. elections for House and Senate seats have been decided by a margin smaller than the number of ballots cast by absentee voters?  All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline.


    Follow a few simple steps to make sure that you can vote in the 2018 U.S. elections:

    Request Your Ballot:  

    Complete a new Federal Post Card Application (FPCA).  You must complete a new FPCA after January 1, 2018 to ensure you receive your ballot for the 2018 elections.  The completion of the FPCA allows you to request absentee ballots for all elections for federal offices (President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House of Representatives) including primaries and special elections during the calendar year in which it is submitted.  The FPCA is accepted by all local election officials in all U.S. states and territories.

    You can complete the FPCA online at  The online voting assistant will ask you questions specific to your state.  We encourage you to ask your local election officials to deliver your blank ballots to you electronically (by email, internet download, or fax, depending on your state).  Include your email address on your FPCA to take advantage of the electronic ballot delivery option. Return the FPCA per the instructions on the website. will tell you if your state allows the FPCA to be returned electronically or if you must submit a paper copy with original signature.  If you must return a paper version, please see below for mailing options.

    Receive and Complete Your Ballot:  

    States are required to send out ballots 45 days before a regular election for federal office and states generally send out ballots at least 30 days before primary elections.  For most states, you can confirm your registration and ballot delivery online.

    Return Your Completed Ballot:  

    Some states allow you to return your completed ballot by email or fax.  If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials, you can use international mail, a courier service such as FedEx or DHL, or you may also drop off completed voting materials during regular business hours at the U.S. Consulate General in Auckland.  Place your materials in a postage paid return envelope (available under "Downloadable Election Materials" on the FVAP homepage) or in an envelope bearing sufficient domestic U.S. postage, and address it to the relevant local election officials.

    New this year – email to fax service by FVAP! - the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) will provide an email-to-fax conversion service for voters who have difficulty sending election materials to States that do not accept emailed documents.  Get more information here.

    Researching the Candidates and Issues:  Online Resources.  Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues.  Non-partisan information about candidates, their voting records, and their positions on issues are widely available and easy to obtain online.  You can also read national and hometown newspapers online, or search the internet to locate articles and information.  For information about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP's Voting Alerts (  FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook and Twitter.

    Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program's (FVAP) website,  If you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact the U.S. Consulate General Auckland Voting Assistance Officer at  

    Remember, your vote counts!

    Be absent but accounted for!

  • 17 Sep 2018 5:43 PM | Rebecca Caroe (Administrator)

    Exciting news from Company-X, the Waikato based software experts about a new partnership with Silicon Valley's Enquero. 

    Jeremy Hughes and David Hallett have created a team with world-class software development skills - their goal with this partnership is to add digital engineering and solution architecture expertise from the Enquero team.

    Scoop press release