Auckland Onlin


The Global Economy and New Zealand (Online)

Certificate of Proficiency | Contributes to PGDipBus

Develop your understanding of the global economy and opportunities for small trading nations such as New Zealand with this 15-point credit bearing course comprising 10 weekly modules.

Recommended Background

No specific experience or qualifications required

University Entrance (or equivalent required for admission)

Only available to NZ citizens and permanent residents over 20 years old


10 weeks

Next start dates

1 July 2024 (2024 Quarter Three)

Enrolment closes one week before the course starts. Apply early to secure your spot.

Domestic Fees*

$1,292.85 (estimate)

Course Overview

This course is part of the Postgraduate Diploma in Business (PGDipBus) and may also be taken as a course-only study option. It considers the nature of the global economy and the opportunities for small trading nations such as New Zealand. You will examine key issues, global trade, and how governmental policies impact businesses. You will also explore how New Zealand can become a more productive and prosperous nation.

Upon completion, students who wish to progress their studies further towards a formal qualification may count this course towards the Postgraduate Diploma in Business (entry criteria and time limits apply).

In this course you will explore concepts and theories about the economics of international trade. You will then apply what you have learned in order to analyse some of New Zealand’s major trading partners (the United States, Australia, East Asia, China, India, and the European Union).

By the end of this course, you will have a more systematic understanding of international trade, global resource distribution, market structure, and regional economic development trends. This economic knowledge provides a starting point for analysing political and economic events and making sound economic decisions.

Introduction to global economy This module is the starting point of your learning journey. We will start with the fundamental economic theory to analyse how the market reaches its equilibrium with the two invisible hands – demand and supply (we will use this knowledge in future studies to analyse trade issues from an economic point of view). Later we will examine international economic integration from a historical perspective. Then we will discover the major international governmental organisations of the global economy, make a case for international institutions, and address some of the criticism they have received.
Understanding comparative advantage This module introduces a key concept in international trade economics: comparative advantage. At the same time, we will also study absolute advantage and look at the difference between the two. We will then move on to the ways in which a country can gain from trade, and the trade-offs for firms that are looking at trading and investing internationally. Lastly, you will explore some of the controversies surrounding the impact of international trade on jobs and wages, both overseas and in New Zealand.
Beyond comparative advantages This module will demonstrate that a large share of international trade is intra-industry trade, and it will describe why this trade occurs. Later, you will consider industrial clusters, whereby traded goods and services (essential to a country’s exports) are produced in regional clusters.
The theory of tariffs and quotas This module introduces the two most commonly applied trade barriers: tariffs, and quotas. We first learn the two key terms for welfare effects – consumer surplus and producer surplus. Then we try to use the supply-demand curve to analyse the welfare effects of trade in both scenarios with and without trade barriers. Finally, we will learn about non-trade barriers with examples.
Balance of payment and exchange rates In this module, we will learn how a country’s wealth that is created by trade is calculated, and how exchange rates between currencies are determined. This module extends on our understanding of crucial concepts related to the supply and demand framework, and trade liberalisation.
An introduction to open economy macroeconomics

In this module, you will begin with a review of open economy macroeconomics at the principles level, exploring the aggregate demand and aggregate supply model. This review will foster your understanding of the role of fiscal and monetary policies and the impact those policies have on interest rates, exchange rates, current accounts and business and consumer decision making.

You will then progress to exploring how the expansionary and contractionary macroeconomic policies influence gross domestic product (GDP) and price levels. You will also learn more about the short-run and long-run effects of fiscal and monetary policies on the current account and exchange rate.

Know our trade partners – United States and Australia

In the previous modules, you explored concepts and theories about the economics of international trade. In this and the following modules, you will apply what you have learned in order to analyse some of New Zealand’s major trading partners.

In this module you will first look at one of our top trading partners, the United States, followed by another top trading partner, Australia. You will learn how to evaluate key free trade agreements, NAFTA and CER, and their economic implications for New Zealand.

Know our trade partners – East Asia In this module, you will explore the success factors of the high-growth economies of East Asia. Generally speaking, these economies have avoided populist policies, have shared the benefits of growth and had relatively open economies. This module also aims to provide background information about the institutional and policy environments of the high-growth East Asian economies.
Know our trade partners – China and India This module focuses on the two most populous nations of the world, China and India. In addition to exploring each country’s economic and demographic characteristics, in this module, you will delve deeper into China’s and India’s trade patterns. We will also discuss the policy changes that led these two countries to turn from isolation and inward-oriented policies to outward-looking integration with the world economy.
Know our trade partners – European Union This is the last module you will study in this course, and you will delve into the EU’s significance for New Zealand’s international trade. The EU is one of the world’s largest trading entities and it is New Zealand’s third-largest trading partner, followed by China and Australia. New Zealand is also looking for a free trade agreement with the EU. This module focuses on the EU’s institutional structure and the history of its widening and deepening. You will then look at the obstacles to regional integration agreements.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  1. outline globalisation and regionalisation processes, their main characteristics and describe their impact on the global economy
  2. critically analyse how economic forces impact decisions by consumers, businesses and governments
  3. critically evaluate why governments implement particular policies, and how markets, firms, societies and other contextual factors constrain and influence the choices that businesses and policymakers make
  4. critically evaluate the role of economic globalisation and trade policies on economic growth and macroeconomic stability, using applied case studies
  5. discover and develop the short and long-term strategies available to New Zealand in the global economy.

Upon successful completion of the course you will:

  • Be awarded with 15 credit points from the University of Auckland
  • Have the option to take your credit into the PGDipBus (entry criteria and time limits apply) 

*Fees are inclusive of 15% GST, but do not include the Student Services Fee, course books, travel and health insurance, or living costs. Amounts shown are indicative only. In addition to the tuition fee, there is a Student Services Fee of $4.44 per point (online). Fees will be confirmed upon completion of enrolment into courses.

Frequently asked questions about this course

Application FAQs

What are the entry requirements?

This course is designed for working professionals. To be admitted you must meet the requirements to study at a New Zealand University (e.g. through University Entrance or an alternative entrance pathway).

Only available to NZ citizens and permanent residents over 20 years old.

What is the date for the next intake?

The next start date for this course is 26 June 2023. Enrolment closes one week before the course starts. Enrol early to secure your spot.

Is the course fee a one-off lump sum?

Yes, the course fee is a one-off sum of $1,285.20 for domestic students.

Is this course open to non-resident students?

No. Currently Auckland Online Certificates of Proficiency are only open to NZ citizens and permanent residents.

Studying FAQs

Can I study the course in my own time? Is it suitable for those working full-time?

Yes. You can study at a time that suits you (within the allocated course dates). Auckland Online courses are designed for working professionals. They are flexible yet structured to help you gain the knowledge in the time you have.

How is the course structured?

The course will run over 10 weeks and will comprise 10 weekly modules. Further details on the course structure can be found under the ‘Course Structure’ tab further up on this page.

Assessment FAQs

How will I be assessed?

Learners will be assessed through a combination of activities that address the learning objectives from each of the modules in the course. These will comprise individual case studies and assignments.

Benefits FAQs

What is a Certificate of Proficiency (CoP)?

A Certificate of Proficiency (CoP) is a course-only study option that allows you to take a course at the University of Auckland, without studying a full programme. It is a good option for those who want to study short-term or to test whether a subject is something they wish to pursue more of in the future.

Does the course enable me to take further study at the University?

If you decide to progress your studies further towards a full qualification, you can apply to reassign the points from your CoP to the PGDipBus (entry criteria and time limits apply).

How many course credits will I attain upon completion of the course?

Upon completion of the course, you will be awarded with 15 credit points from the University of Auckland.

Do I get a certificate at the end?

As a Certificate of Proficiency is not a formal qualification, you will not be able to graduate with it or receive a graduation certificate. Your results will be recorded on your official academic transcript, providing evidence of your study.

The Global Economy and New Zealand – Start your application

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