Drury on fibre


Outside New Zealand, the world is becoming a more tribal, more uncertain place. People in the US live in fear they might lose their healthcare. If a kid gets sick many parents will face the prospect of bankruptcy – that is no way to live.

The UK will be confused for a few years as it untangles itself from Europe. In Australia their ultrafast broadband project is delayed significantly with many businesses and people being left behind by a lack of infrastructure while the world goes global with technology.

I can honestly say I’d rather be in New Zealand than anywhere else in the world.

We always have more work to do around providing housing in New Zealand and helping those in need. But there are signs much of the country is in great shape for the new connected world. In the regions we now have ultra-fast broadband, and by fast I mean blazing.

New connections are virtually gigabyte sized, 10 times what the original connections were a few years ago. We have companies that are scaling in this new global environment, there is Amazon, Netflix, Uber, home food delivery, 4G mobile, and we’re starting to see electric cars and power systems to fuel them. Via the internet we have access to the world, there is a great lifestyle on offer here, world-class food and wine, in a country small enough where people still really care about each other.

I think the investment in fibre has been stunningly successful.  Some laughed and said it would only be good for faster porn. But as everything moves to the cloud and streaming, those faster speeds make a huge difference.

This has accelerated over the past five years – the amount of time top technologists from around the world now spend in New Zealand would surprise many of us. This makes the America’s Cup in 2021 a galvanising event with many, many opportunities.

While successful people using New Zealand as a lifestyle playground challenges our New Zealand value of equality – which will fuel talkback radio for years – the desirability of New Zealand gives us an advantage to create opportunities that will benefit all. Their investment and presence opens up networks that many of us use today to build our businesses and create jobs.

I welcome the Peter Theils and the James Camerons.

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