Hon Te Ururoa Flavell
Te Minita Whakawhanaketanga Māori
Minister for Māori Development
Associate Minister for Economic Development
30 November 2016 Media Statement
Minister Flavell welcomes Southland plan
Minister for Māori Development and Associate Minister for Economic Development Te Ururoa Flavell is welcoming Māori involvement in the Southland Regional Development Strategy Action Plan launched today, which aims to diversify Southland’s economy, grow the population and strengthen local business.
Southland is an area where Māori are already important players in the local economy, Mr Flavell says.
“Māori involvement in the Southland economy is growing and continues to grow. It’s been important for local iwi to be at the governance table and part of the development of both the 2015, Southland Regional Development Strategy and the action plan,” Mr Flavell says.
“Local iwi are involved in a number of initiatives around the region and are significant investors. There is an opportunity for the region in forming sustainable partnerships and making the most of the long-term commercial nous of Māori.”
Iwi are particularly involved in two big focus areas for Southland – aquaculture and tourism, Mr Flavell says.
“Building on the aquaculture industry will have benefits to Māori directly, through employment, and will have a flow on effect to places like Bluff with potential shipping of cargo and equipment for the industry.”
Iwi will play an integral part in the development of an overarching ‘story’ reflective of the Southland’s heritage to market the region to both migrants and visitors, as well as in creating individual tourism products, Mr Flavell says.
“The Rakiura Māori Land Trust has successfully applied for $145,000 from Te Puni Kōkiri to construct a purpose-built heritage centre that will house and display their taonga on Stewart Island. They will also look into ways that they can utilise their whenua through tourism ventures.
“The Rakiura Heritage Centre will add more value to the tourism sector using available resources and contribute to the local economy by attracting new visitors and helping keep visitors on the island for longer.
“Awarua Rūnanga are driving an initiative looking at the feasibility of an oyster-focused tourist attraction – Bluff Oyster World – that has the potential to employ up to 10 people from the outset and to leverage partnerships with other whānau-driven developments throughout the Murihiku region.”
Mr Flavell says that it is pleasing to see the effective collaboration of iwi, businesses, and local and central government, who are pulling together to reach the region’s goals and aspirations.
More information on the Southland Regional Development Strategy Action Plan and the Regional Growth Programme can be found athttp://www.mbie.govt.nz/info-services/sectors-industries/regions-cities/regional-growth-programme/southland.