What the Year of the Dog means for NZ


New Zealand is the first place to see in the Chinese New Year, which is very auspicious.


Associate Professor Henry Chung, an expert in marketing and Chinese culture with the Massey Business School, explains the significance of Chinese New Year – and the benefits it brings to New Zealand.

How big a deal is Chinese New Year?

More than 1.6 billion people (more than 25 per cent of the world’s population) celebrate Chinese New Year – and New Zealand should see plenty of visitors taking advantage of the holiday and celebrating the Year of the Dog here. It is also significant that New Zealand is the first place in the world to see in the Chinese New Year, as what you do in the first moments of the new year shapes the rest of the year.

In this holiday period, people do just two things: relax and reunite with family. People spend a lot of time and money to prepare a very sumptuous dinner for Chinese New Year Eve. What you choose to eat in that dinner signals what you will likely consume in the coming year. During this time, New Zealand products such as red wines (it needs to be red as this signals blessing and good luck), fruit and meat are very popular in Northern Hemisphere. It is a big business opportunity for New Zealand exporters.  

What does the Year of the Dog mean for the year ahead?

The Dog is very loyal and faithful. It denotes reliability, hard work, sincerity and intelligence. Faithfulness, in particular, is a big matter in Chinese society as it leads to trust. Trust is everything. No trust means no insightful intelligence in business or politics. So, if you are looking for a faithful relationship, friendship or partner, then someone born in the Year of Dog would be a good choice.

During the Chinese New Year period, Chinese leaders visit their formal mentors or teachers to show their respect. This is reflected in a very famous Chinese saying, "Yin shui shi yuan", which means "when drinking water, one needs to think about the source of the water". This is particularly true in the Year of the Dog as it is a year about loyalty, faith and respect.         

Who does the Year of the Dog favour?

In the Year of the Dog, the Ox is expected to perform better than in 2017. The Tiger is expected to be very successful in romance. Most of the dreams of the Snake should come true, and the year looks very promising for the Goat. The Dragon will be happy in its relationships and finances and it is also a lucky year for the Rooster as there are plenty of opportunities (business, friends and relationships). 

However, the Year of the Dog is not so promising for the Rat as its health may not be constant this year. Rabbits need to protect what they have as there is a lot of uncertainly for them. The Horse needs to be quite patient as rushing will not achieve anything. Similarly, Monkeys need to be careful about their relationships. 

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