The Southeast Asia Centre of Asia-Pacific Excellence (SEA CAPE) was established by the New Zealand government to enhance our engagement with the ten ASEAN member countries and Timor-Leste. The Southeast Asia CAPE is hosted by Victoria University of Wellington as part of a consortium of New Zealand universities.


Meet the SEA CAPE Team


As well as strengthening engagement with this region, the Southeast Asia CAPE works with New Zealand exporters, young people, government agencies and others to improve understanding of these countries and build knowledge of their economies, languages, cultures and business protocols.

Through a range of programmes and initiatives, the Southeast Asia CAPE will show New Zealanders why and how to deepen our understanding of these valuable economies. This will ensure that the knowledge and skills we build will be broadly disseminated to our target clients, namely New Zealand businesses, schools, tertiary students, migrant communities and the wider public.

Our Objectives

  • To equip New Zealanders to engage and do business with the ASEAN countries and Timor Leste.
  • To broaden and deepen New Zealanders' understanding of Southeast Asian cultures, societies, languages, politics and economies.
  • To excel nationally and internationally in dissemination of knowledge and skills relating to Southeast Asia.
  • To enhance New Zealand's economic, trade, political and cultural relationships within the region.


Our Consortium

Three government-funded CAPEs (North Asia, Southeast Asia and Latin America) were established in July 2017 to enhance New Zealand's cultural understanding of and business engagement with these regions. Supported by four of New Zealand's leading universities – University of Auckland, Victoria University of Wellington, Otago University and University of Waikato – the CAPEs harness academic expertise, evidence-based research, stakeholder experience and industry acumen to help ensure best practice with these regions.

The universities affiliated with the CAPEs offer contributions across multiple disciplines, as well as industry acumen and strategic linkages throughout the Asia-Pacific.


We also collaborate with:

  • Central government agencies, including New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, the Ministry of Education, Education New Zealand and the Ministry for Primary Industries
  • Regional economic development agencies and chambers of commerce
  • Southeast Asia embassies in New Zealand
  • Businesses and business groups, active in the region and at the forefront of innovation




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