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Apr 20, 2022
Climate Tech
Make a difference

New Zealand trade delegation to Asia: collective climate action at the heart of opening for business

Julie Lindenberg
In partnership with

Cogo was born out of a conviction that we need to move a lot faster in terms of taking personal responsibility, and action for mitigating climate change. New Zealand’s current trade delegation, led by Jacinda Ardern, is a celebrated step towards reopening New Zealand to the world, with a focus on promoting sustainability and innovation. Our APAC CEO, Julie Lindenberg, has been on the ground to represent Cogo, connect with industry leaders and changemakers in Asia and share our message around the importance of collective action. Read her mid-trip reflections below…

This trade delegation has come at an opportune time. I remember reading a report on the state of the climate in Asia recently, which highlighted extreme weather and climate change impacts across Asia that had “...caused the loss of life of thousands of people, displaced millions of others and cost hundreds of billions of dollars, while wreaking a heavy toll on infrastructure and ecosystems”. While these facts are obviously (and rightfully) alarming, I couldn’t help but see opportunity: the need for change is so tangible, so real that it simply can’t be ignored. We should be taking every chance we get to drive change; to build a solid foundation of action on the current rubble of carelessness and ignorance. 

As a realist, I know that the scale of the climate crisis is scary, but that doesn’t mean that change isn’t possible. The key to driving that change is through the collective action of government, individuals and businesses. That’s why this trade mission - the first time the New Zealand Prime Minister (PM) has left the country in over two years - is such a pivotal moment. Yes, borders are opening for the first time since 2020, but also: there’s an obvious, urgent focus on sustainability, and how innovative technology (possibly the greatest accelerator and enabler of change over the past decade) can help turn goals into action. That’s HUGE! 

In Singapore, peak emissions are estimated to reach 65MtCO2e around 2030, with a view to achieving net zero emissions as soon as viable. What we’re seeing, and what’s become evident on this trip, is that governments and businesses are determined and focused on putting action behind the targets. They’re walking the talk…and as a company - one of 13 Kiwi innovators invited to join the delegation - we’re super excited to lead and walk side by side with them on their journey!

Cogo believes the real power will be in our hands as consumers. We can all take consistent action, no matter how small, that compounds into real tangible impact. 

The good news is that we’re already out of the starting blocks in Asia; we’re already empowering consumers across the continent. Earlier this year, we announced our partnership with digital banking technology innovator Moneythor to make it easier for banks to provide their customers with climate conscious banking solutions.

Our technology has the opportunity to impact Asia’s entire carbon footprint by enabling repeatable, purposeful exchanges between the two biggest global contributors to over-consumption: businesses and customers. That's real change; and it’s exponential impact. 

In addition to this exciting partnership, we’ve been selected amongst a group of just six successful applicants from a pool of 17 countries by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) to receive a Green Finance Subsidy that supports overseas companies in this space to successfully enter their market. 

Our technology has the opportunity to impact Asia’s entire carbon footprint by enabling repeatable, purposeful exchanges between the two biggest global contributors to over-consumption: businesses and customers. That's real change; and it’s exponential impact. 

There’s never been a more important time to impact the world’s carbon footprint. It’s been an honour to meet business leaders and government representatives who are as passionate about sustainability, business and innovation as we are, and I look forward to sharing my key takeaways from this trip with you soon. 

Follow along our impact-led journey to help affect positive change by following us on any of our social pages for updates.