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Good faith key to durable Treaty settlements

May 2006

Good faith negotiation key to durable Treaty settlement outcomes

Conducting Treaty negotiations confidentially and in good faith is key to ensuring a durable settlement is reached, Treaty Negotiations Minister Mark Burton said today.

"Entering and conducting Treaty negotiations in good faith is key to reaching an outcome that addresses the issues for the parties involved both now and in the future."

The comments were made in response to a call from Deputy National Leader Gerry Brownlee to waive the confidentiality clause relating to Tainui's Treaty claim on the Waikato River.

"The Crown is aware that other parties have interests in the Waikato River and will notify and consult relevant parties as part of the normal process in historical Treaty settlement negotiations.

"Waikato-Tainui and the Crown are currently working toward an Agreement in Principle, which will be non-binding, made public and consulted on.

"The Government negotiates redress for historical Treaty claims with the interests of all New Zealanders in mind.

"Mr Brownlee's call ignores the success of previous Treaty settlements of a similar nature.

"These settlements have dealt with a range of important natural resources and have preserved public access and the rights of existing users.

"Although I cannot discuss the details of any specific current negotiation, redress agreed between the parties in any such negotiations will need to provide for the existing rights of others."

Currently, the Government is in negotiations with over 20 groups, covering several hundred claims.

ENDS

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