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PM Speech: Launch of Hui Taumata 2005

Fri, 17 Sep 2004

Prime Ministers speech Launch of Hui Taumata 2005, Maori Television Service Studios, Auckland

Hui Taumata 2005 will celebrate what has been achieved since Mâoridom last gathered formally in this way for a stocktake; and it will focus on how to expand economic pathways to benefit current and future generations.


Twenty years ago, the 1984 Hui Taumata in Wellington was the catalyst for many new initiatives and developments in Mâoridom.

Indeed comparing the pre 1984 era with what we see today, one can only be struck by the huge change which has occurred.

Back in 1984, the Waitangi Tribunal claims process was limited to claims from 1975 onwards and even the legislation providing for that was only passed in 1975. No Treaty settlements as we know them today had been made.

Twenty years ago, use of te reo Mâori was diminishing, and there were almost no Mâori health or education providers, few easily identifiable Mâori businesses, and no Mâori broadcasting services.

A dedicated, stand alone Mâori Television Service such as the one whose premises we are in today would have seemed an impossible dream.

Hui Taumata 2005 will celebrate what has been achieved since Mâoridom last gathered formally in this way for a stocktake; and it will focus on how to expand economic pathways to benefit current and future generations.

The Mâori population is fast growing - up fifty per cent between the 1986 and 2001 censuses. By 2021, it will be around seventeen per cent of our total population.

It will also be a young population, with a median age for Mâori of 27, compared to 43 for non-Mâori. Clearly it is critical to the future of New Zealand that this growing and youthful population does well.

It helps that many more Mâori children are enrolled in early childhood education. The numbers have almost trebled since 1983.

It helps that the numbers of Mâori in tertiary education have rocketed - up more than twenty times since 1986.

That participation has expanded as tertiary institutions have developed learning environments which are responsive to Mâori, and both the mainstream and wananga have contributed to that.

In industry training, Mâori have been eager to take up the opportunities available.

Mâori represented seventeen per cent of industry trainees last year, although only ten per cent of the employed workforce was Mâori.

Many more Mâori are now employers or self employed - the numbers trebled between 1981 and 2001.

Most striking has been the sharp reduction in Mâori unemployment. In 1986 it stood at around eleven per cent, and soared to around 24 per cent in 1991. In 1999 it was still over eighteen per cent. Now the annual rate is under ten per cent, and the most recent quarterly figure was 8.8 per cent.

All these trends augur well for Mâori economic development, a key focus for this Hui Taumata.

Also significant is the Mâori commercial asset base, estimated at around $9 billion.

The New Zealand Institute of Economic Research has provided Te Puni Kokiri with a lot of information on Mâori participation in the economy.

Resource-based industries are a strong focus for Mâori businesses, especially farming, fisheries, and forestry.

NZIER has estimated the value of Mâori agricultural output to be around seven per cent of the total for New Zealand.

Maori are estimated to control up to 37 per cent of New Zealand's domestic fishing quota, generating approximately $299 million in fishing revenue. The new provision for Mâori participation in aquaculture will open up new opportunities in this sector.

About ten per cent of the land under the forest estate is controlled by Mâori, although there are only limited Mâori interests in forestry production at this time.

The NZIER report also showed emerging Mâori interests in newer industries, such as tourism and consumer goods, and high-value export-oriented goods such as fashion.

It is fair to note that there are also growing numbers of Mâori voices being heard at company board level, including those of Crown Entities and State Owned Enterprises.

The seeds have been sown for Mâori to make an even greater contribution to New Zealand's future.

And that is the vision for Hui Taumata 2005 : To expand Mâori economic pathways: Creating, growing and succeeding in our future together - ka hua, ka tupu, ka toa !

While the Government is funding this enormously important process, its direction and guidance lies with the Steering Group chaired by Sir Paul Reeves. The group's members are Dame Te Atairangikaahu, Professor Ngatata Love, Koro Wetere, Professor Linda Smith, Alison Thom, Rob McLeod, Tumu Te Heu Heu, Shane Jones, Rawiri Te Whare, Mark Solomon, Katerina Bennett, and Taria Tahana.

The Hui will be held in Wellington from 1-3 March 2005, bringing together a wide range of perspectives from across Mâoridom to look at ways to accelerate Mâori economic growth.

It is supported by a six-month long programme of research and discussion under the major themes of Developing People, Developing Assets, and Developing Enterprise.

Agencies including Statistics New Zealand, Department of Labour, Ministry of Education, Te Puni Kokiri, and the Ministry of Tourism, are carrying out an analysis of trends since the 1984 Hui Taumata, and projecting trends out to 2025.

The work of these agencies will be captured in draft stimulus papers, based on the themes of Developing Assets, People, and Enterprise.

Between November and January next year the Steering Committee will release these papers.

These stimulus papers will identify the key issues for Mâori development over the next twenty years to promote thinking and discussion prior to the Hui Taumata.

Final papers will be published in February in time for the actual Hui in March.

Hui Taumata 2005 is more than a three day Hui. It provides an opportunity for wide participation in charting Mâori development for the next twenty years and beyond. It is about mobilising further the energy within Maoridom to build even stronger contributions to our nation.

Today the Steering Group has unveiled the logo for the Hui Taumata, based on that used in 1984. The symbol (tohu) from 1984 forms the belly button (pito); it is protected by parents (nga matua), and it provides the base from which the future can grow.

The website for the Hui Taumata 2005 also goes live today - www.huitaumata.maori.nz.

It is a pleasure to be able to support Hui Taumata 2005 going forward today.


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