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Collaboration within Tūwharetoa delivers greater benefit

Collaboration within Tūwharetoa delivers greater benefit for Iwi

Working collaboratively with other Tūwharetoa entities has seen Tūwharetoa Settlement Trust (the Trust) continue to strengthen its position in the 2017-2018 financial year, delivering further positive results and increasing grants available to whānau and marae to nearly $1 million.

The Trust achieved a net profit after tax of $8.5 million, representing an increase of $3.9 million on the previous year. Its equity has increased to $47.5 million and it remains completely debt-free.

The annual results were announced today at Tūwharetoa Settlement Trust’s AGM held at Wairakei Resort in Taupō.

Chairman Rakeipoho Taiaroa said the Trust has refreshed its strategic plan, with a renewed emphasis on long-term positioning and working effectively with other Tūwharetoa entities for the benefit of the entire Iwi.

“We are committed to working together in a positive, efficient and respectful manner for the benefit of Ngāti Tūwharetoa,” he said.

“Day to day we are working collaboratively with the Tūwharetoa Māori Trust Board and Ngāti Tūwharetoa Fisheries Charitable Trust, building on what we have formalised through our Memorandum of Understanding. This has created much greater efficiency for our people.

“On a larger scale, we are also leveraging joint investment within wider Tūwharetoa, so we can take up opportunities that would generally be too big for us to realise on our own.”

As part of this strategy, Tūwharetoa Settlement Trust has been part of forming two significant Tūwharetoa partnerships targeting national and regional investment opportunities.

“We are excited to see what can be achieved through joint investments in the coming years,” said Mr Taiaroa. “We believe these kinds of partnerships have the potential to be a real game-changer for our Iwi.”

During the year, following approval from its southern Forest Hapū Cluster Trusts, Tūwharetoa Settlement Trust also completed the sale of its forestry rights for Taurewa, Waituhi and Pureora South Forests to Lake Taupō Forest Management Limited (LTFM).

“This transaction has enabled us to reduce our heavy exposure to the forestry sector, and to provide funding for other investment opportunities.”

Mr Taiaroa said he is pleased to report that the Trust has made “significant progress” in increasing grants for Ngāti Tūwharetoa whānui and marae.

“In 2018 we increased the total fund available for grants to just under $1 million, through the addition of Marae Capital Works grants and three STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education scholarships.

“This is fantastic for our people and is the result of the Trust’s careful financial management. Five years ago, we had to make changes to secure a stronger financial future, and at that stage we had to temporarily cease some grants.

“Now in 2018, we are delivering more benefits to our people that ever before. We want to keep building on this into the future – all our mahi is focused on actively improving the long-term social, economic and cultural wellbeing of Ngāti Tūwharetoa.”

A copy of the Trust’s Annual Report and further information is available at www.tst.maori.nz


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