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Central North Island Treaty discussions continue

Central North Island Treaty discussions continue

Treaty Negotiations Minister Margaret Wilson will again meet with central North Island tribes to continue discussions on how Treaty claims in the region can move forward.

Cabinet on Monday agreed to continue the dialogue that formally began in December when the Minister met with Ngati Tuwharetoa Paramount Chief Tumu Te Heuheu and other CNI claimants.

Since then, former Cabinet Minister David Caygill has been facilitating the discussions for the Crown. There have been several meetings with claimants, and the Crown Forestry Rental Trust funded a series of hui for claimants to meet and consider the issues involved in progressing claims.

Talks have included representatives of the Te Arawa and Mataatua waka, which include the large tribal confederations of Tuwharetoa, Te Arawa and Tuhoe, and the tribes of Ngati Manawa and Ngati Whare. The claims of these groups stretch from Taupo to the Bay of Plenty and include large areas of Crown forest land.

Key issues under consideration include:

what groups want to engage in any negotiations how they would come together who might represent them how negotiations would relate to the Waitangi Tribunal inquiries in the region that are planned or under way.

The Minister will outline her views on the future direction of the discussions at a meeting in Taupo on 23 April.

“There has been good progress, and both the Crown and claimants agree that we need to continue,” Margaret Wilson says.

“The dialogue has been helpful and soon it will be time to start negotiations”.

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