The bereft family of a missing Chinese student has offered a $200,000 reward to anyone who can help them find him.

It is thought to be the largest sum ever offered in New Zealand for information on a potential crime - almost double what police announced last month in their bid to flush out a cold case killer.

Guoquan Wu, also known as Laurence Wu, hasn't been seen since March 10 on Sainsbury Rd, in the suburb of St Lukes. His vehicle - a Hyundai Santa Fe with the licence plate number GSE162 - was found at Piha Beach car park two days later.

The 22-year-old University of Auckland student's parents and brother, Lucas, flew to New Zealand from the family's home city of Guangzhou, in China, shortly after his disappearance.

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But so far searches have been unable to find Wu.

Flyers around the Piha beach area appealing for information on possible sightings of Laurence Wu.
Flyers around the Piha beach area appealing for information on possible sightings of Laurence Wu.

"Over these past months, our family has faced the most difficult, toughest and painful times with the disappearance of Laurence," brother Lucas Wu wrote today.

"We would like to seek closure to this investigation."

To do this, the family was offering a $200,000 reward for anyone who can find Wu or his body, or "provide sufficient evidence and help us to find him or his body".

To date the highest reward offered by the police in return for information about a crime came last month.

A record $100,000 is on offer to anyone who can help identity and convict the murderer of Christchruch mum Angela Blackmoore.

Blackmoore, a 21-year-old who was 10 weeks' pregnant, was stabbed 39 times in her house on Vancouver Crescent in the Christchurch suburb of Wainoni on the blustery, warm Thursday evening of August 17, 1995.

Her 2-year-old son Dillon was sleeping in his bedroom at the time of her death.

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Her partner, Laurie Anderson, discovered her body when he returned home after work at 11.20pm that night.

Police never found her killer, despite interviews with hundreds of people, and the case has remained open for more than two decades.

The announcement of the reward led to a flush of potential leads for police.

The Wu family home hoped that their reward would also help them find out what happened to their loved one.

"We are hopeful that once the public sees the news, someone can provide critical or accurate information that will help us find Laurence Wu," his brother said.

At the end of March after three weeks searching for Wu, Lucas told the Herald his family had felt "helpless".

Wu's car, a Grey Hyundai Santa Fe (registration GSE162) was found parked at Piha Beach car park. Photo / Supplied
Wu's car, a Grey Hyundai Santa Fe (registration GSE162) was found parked at Piha Beach car park. Photo / Supplied

"We've been to Piha many times. We checked every place he might be, but so far we've found nothing. We've also checked the university, the casino, internet cafes, clubs."

The family had also put up a lot of missing person posters, but no one had come forward with information.

Wu had broken up with his girlfriend recently, and she told the family Wu had said he was going to Piha to "clear his mind".

The family of missing Auckland student Guoquan Wu, also known as Laurence Wu, have posted a $200,000 reward. Photo / Supplied
The family of missing Auckland student Guoquan Wu, also known as Laurence Wu, have posted a $200,000 reward. Photo / Supplied

However, the family did not believe Wu had deliberately harmed himself, Lucas Wu said.

"He's a funny and outgoing person."

Police confirmed they had received an email offering a $200,000 reward for information that led to his discovery.

Earlier in March, police said they were still "conducting a number of lines of inquiry" into Wu's disappearance.